Children exposed to antibiotics more prone to obesity
Young infants exposed to antibiotics more likely to bloat up in childhood, says a study conducted on 11,532 children.
Researchers from the New York University (NYU) School of Medicine and its Wagner School of Public Service observed that on an average, children exposed to antibiotics from birth to five months of age weighed more in ratio to their height than children who were not administered with antibiotics.
These children in the age of 10 to 20 months, experienced small increases in body mass percentile, based on models that incorporated the potential impacts of diet, physical activity and parental obesity, says a report published in the International Journal of Obesity.
When they reach in their 38 month of birth the children are 22 percent more prone to being overweight.
The timing of exposure has also a great bearing on weight of the children. Those exposed from six months to 14 months did not have significantly higher body mass than children who did not receive antibiotics in that same time period, states a New York statement.
The NYU School of Medicine researchers, led by Leonardo Trasande, associate professor of paediatrics and environmental medicine and Jan Blustein, professor of population health and medicine, warn that the study only shows that a linked between antibiotics and obesity exists.
"We typically consider obesity an epidemic grounded in unhealthy diet and exercise, yet increasingly studies suggest it is more complicated," Trasande has been quoted as saying.
"Microbes in our intestines may play critical roles in how we absorb calories, and exposure to antibiotics, especially early in life, may kill off healthy bacteria that influence how we absorb nutrients into our bodies, and would otherwise keep us lean," Trasande added.
This study is one of its kind, as it has taken into account the correlation between the use of antibiotics and body mass starting in infancy.
--with inputs from IANS
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