Thursday, July 24, 2008

INFO: Babies cared for by parents weigh less--Interesting

Babies cared for by licensed day-care centers, informal child-care providers or relatives weigh more than babies cared for by parents, U.S. researchers found.

Juhee Kim of the University of Illinois and Karen Peterson of Harvard University's School of Public Health say the results of this study indicate that structural characteristics of child care were all related to infant feeding practices and weight gain among a representative sample of U.S. infants.

Kim and Peterson analyzed baseline data from a nationally representative sample of 8,150 9-month-old infants to determine whether infant-feeding practices and non-parental care might be a factor in the rise in weight of the infants.

The study, published in the Archives of Pediatrics & Adolescent Medicine, found infants in part-time child care gained more weight -- 6 ounces -- by 9 months of age, compared with those receiving only parental care. Those cared for by relatives also showed a weight gain of 5.7 ounces

The researchers' findings could have significant public-health ramifications, as weight gain in infancy can ultimately be a predictor of obesity later in life.


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