Germany: maternal stress linked with childen being overweight

05 March 2019

A mother’s high stress levels during her child’s first year of life will probably lead to her child developing a higher body mass index in the first five years of its life.

Stressed Mother iStock

The study, published in BMC Public Health and carried out by researchers from the Helmholtz Centre for Environmental Research (UFZ), the University of Bristol and the Berlin Institute of Health, found that the effects were particularly evident in girls’ weight development.

Co-author and nutritionist Dr Kristin Junge, from the Department of Environmental Immunology at UFZ, said: ‘If mothers are helped early on or are offered support, we may be able to kill two birds with one stone: to improve maternal wellbeing and also prevent their children becoming overweight.’

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