Trajectory of Adolescent Obesity: Exploring the Impact of Prenatal to Childhood Experiences
This study examined longitudinal associations of prenatal exposures as well as childhood familial experiences with obesity status from ages 10 to 18. Hierarchical generalized linear modeling was applied to examine 5,156 adolescents from the child sample of the 1979 National Longitudinal Survey of Youth. Higher maternal weight, maternal smoking during pregnancy, lower maternal education, and lack of infant breastfeeding were contributors to elevated adolescent obesity risk in early adolescence. However, maternal age, high birth weight of child, and maternal annual income exhibited long-lasting impact on obesity risk over time throughout adolescence. Additionally, childhood familial experiences were significantly related to risk of adolescent obesity. Appropriate use of family rules in the home and parental engagement in children’s daily activities lowered adolescent obesity risk, but excessive television viewing heightened adolescent obesity risk. Implementation of consistent family rules and parental engagement may benefit adolescents at risk for obesity.
KeywordsAdolescence Familial experiences Obesity Prenatal risk exposure Smoking
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