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Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Nutrients in milk link to obesity

Taken from yahoo news:

Feeding babies milk enriched with nutrients to promote faster weight gain in infancy makes them fatter later in life, researchers have suggested.

Body fat mass in five to eight-year-olds was 22% to 38% greater in those who were given nutrient-enriched milk as babies than those who had standard formula, according to a team based at the University College London Institute of Child Health.

Researchers looked at two randomised, controlled, double blind studies - where neither they nor the mothers knew which kind of milk they were assigned - involving small newborn babies in hospitals in Cambridge, Nottingham, Leicester and Glasgow.

Mothers who had no plans to breastfeed were given either standard formula milk or a formula containing extra protein, energy-boosters, vitamins and minerals.

In the first study, which was conducted on 299 babies between 1993 and 1995, the formula was used for nine months.

Researchers then measured the body fat of 153 (51%) of the children in their homes between 1999 and 2002.

The second study involved 246 infants between 2003 and 2005 - until it was stopped early due to evidence of the link between early over-nutrition and later obesity - of whom 90 (37%) were followed up to assess fat levels in 2008-09.

Professor Atul Singhal, from the MRC Childhood Nutrition Research Centre, UCL Institute of Child Health, who led the study, said: "This study robustly demonstrates a link between early nutrition and having more fat in later life in humans - a finding suggested by previous studies and confirmed in many other animals."

It is interesting to think that what we eat/drink in infancy can have such a poweful affect on our lives in adulthood.

Link to Article

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