Maternal obesity: major determinant of offspring health

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In addition to immediate implications for pregnancy complications, increasing evidence implicates maternal obesity as a major determinant of off spring health during childhood and later adult life. Observational studies provide evidence for effects of maternal obesity on her off spring’s risks of obesity, coronary heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, and asthma. Maternal obesity could also lead to poorer cognitive performance and increased risk of neurodevelopmental disorders, including cerebral palsy. Preliminary evidence suggests potential implications for immune and infectious-disease-related outcomes. Insights from experimental studies support causal effects of maternal obesity on off spring outcomes,...