C-Sections may drive obesity epidemic

| 13/05/2011

(CNS): Babies born via Cesarean section are more likely to grow up to be fat according to researchers. The theory is controversial and experts have cautioned that scientists are still a long way from getting to the bottom of the west’s obesity expolsion. In this latest study, Brazilian researchers found that among more than 2,000 23- to 25-year-olds, 15 percent of those delivered via C-section were obese compared to 10 percent of thoseborn naturally. The results of the research has been published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and those involved admit that it is not yet proof that C-sections directly cause obesity

Dr Helena Goldani from the Universidade Federal do Rio Grande do Sul in Porto Alegre, Brazil, said the results did not prove cause-and-effect.
Dr Xavier P-Sunyer, director of the New York Obesity Centre at St Luke’s Hospital, called the study “interesting” but said it “requires a lot more research.” He said there was a “huge gap” in the data.
The reason behind the possible link between a child being born through C-section and becoming obese in later life is still unknown. It is possible, researchers say, that when a Caesarean is carried out, the baby misses out on helpful bacteria that it would have been exposed to in the birth canal. This might affect their metabolism and thereby influence their risk of obesity.

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