Smoking during pregnancy leads to the risk of children's obesity
Smoking of pregnant woman means high risk of extra weight gaining by her child in the age of adolescence, Canadian scientists have determined. Their work was published in Archives of General Psychiatry Magazine.
"Cigarettes smoke influence on baby that is inside the womb of smoking woman is a well known factor of obesity development, but till today mechanism wasn't known. Possibly, the reason of weight gaining becomes preference of greasier food what is partially regulated by the system of brain remuneration", - are quoted in press-release of Child hospital in Toronto words of research authors.
Group of scientists has examined 378 teenagers in the age of 13-19 years, all of which were taken from high school students in Quebec. Participants were divided into groups: those, whose mothers have smoked during pregnancy, were 180 people and those, whose mothers haven't smoked - 198 people. In each group participants were chosen considering mother's education and level of education in the school to minimize influence of social-economical factors. Researchers haven't made any difference from point of view of sex, age, pubertal development or growth.
Influence of tobacco smoke was considered enough for taking part in the research, if mother smoked more than one cigarette a day during second term of pregnancy. To "non-smoking" group were referred teenagers whose mothers haven't smoked during pregnancy and during the year before pregnancy.
Children from first group as compared to the second had less weight during the birth and they received mother's milk during shorter period of time. At the research moment participants from first group had higher weight and body-weight index and also index of total fat content in the body as compared to "non-smoking" peers. These differences haven't changed and after age, sex and height amendments.
Teenagers from first group also had less brain area, amygdaloidal body responsible for expressing emotions and keeping memories. Scientists have also found out that reduced size of amygdaloidal body could influence fat food consumption as normally this structure restricts consumption of fats.
"Intrauterine influence of smoke from mother's cigarette can further gaining extra weight, changing food preferences in favor of fat food and this effect may be conditioned by structural changes in amygdaloidal body", - authors conclude.