X

Obese? Chance of Birthing Autistic Kid Jumps 67%

Inflammation, high blood sugar during pregnancy could be a factor
By Matt Cantor,  Newser User
Posted Apr 9, 2012 6:34 AM CDT

(Newser) – The shocking new autism research just keeps coming: A mother's obesity while pregnant may greatly boost the odds of having a child with autism, a study out today suggests. Compared to normal-weight study participants, those who were obese while pregnant were 67% more likely to have autistic kids and twice as likely to have kids with other developmental issues. Normally, the odds of having a child with autism are about one in 88; according to the study, obesity boosts those odds to one in 53.

story continues below

One theory behind the possible link: The inflammation-related substances and high blood sugar found in an obese woman's blood may affect a fetus' brain. The AP cautions that it's one of the first studies to suggest such a link and certainly doesn't prove causation; many other factors, including genetics, are thought to be involved, experts say. Still, the data raises "quite a concern" given the fact that more than one-third of US women of child-bearing age are obese, researchers note. (Read more autism stories.)

We use cookies. By Clicking "OK" or any content on this site, you agree to allow cookies to be placed. Read more in our privacy policy.
Get the news faster.
Tap to install our app.
X