An overweight baby is a baby who gains weight far out of proportion to her growth in height. An overweight baby looks fat. Fat babies are not necessarily healthy babies. The infants who continue to be overweight as children and adults usually have parents, siblings, or grandparents who are overweight. Any infant in a family with a strong tendency toward obesity needs help. Some physicians wait to make changes in the diet until the child shows signs of being overweight. However, prevention is easier than treatment.

Breastfed babies are less likely to grow into overweight children than those fed formula, even if their mothers are obese or have diabetes, research confirms.

Exclusively breastfed babies had roughly a 34% reduced risk of being overweight during childhood, compared to children exclusively formula-fed, according to a new analysis of data from a study involving more than 15,000 children.

The finding suggests breastfeeding could help break the cycle of overweight and diabetes among children born to mothers with diabetes.

While overweight infants often grow up to be overweight older children and adults, many do not. Some babies who are totally breastfed can be very overweight, but in my experience most of them trim down as they begin solid foods.

An overweight 8-month-old probably put on most of his weight as a consequence of drinking a lot of formula or breast milk.Weaning that child from the bottle promptly and limiting his intake to three 4-ounce cups of milk a day by the time he is a year old will help.

As soon as your child can handle finger foofds safely (but not neatly), let him feed himself most of the time. Some infants will reflexively take whatever you offer them on a spoon even if they are not hungry. Allowing your child to dictate his own intake makes him less likely to overeat. Of course choose his diet wisely. Ice cream more than one night a week is a bad idea. Avoid snacks that are high in calories.

Causes of overweight babies

Some studies have connected increased birth weights to gestational diabetes, a mother’s excess weight gain during pregnancy and a mother’s own high weight before pregnancy.

For babies, the research suggested it was linked to the eating habits of women while pregnant and the rate of gestational diabetes, which affects women solely during pregnancy.

Diabetes mellitus, or type 2 diabetes, usually develops in men or women over 40 years of age although it is now being seen in overweight children.

It is a condition that occurs when your body cannot regulate the amount of glucose in your blood. Glucose is a sugar produced when you digest your food. It is also produced and stored by your liver.

Blood glucose levels are regulated by insulin, a hormone produced by your pancreas. Problems start when your body either does not produce enough insulin (as in type I diabetes) or if the muscle, liver and fat cells do not respond normally to insulin. This latter situation is called insulin resistance and leads to a high level of glucose in the blood (hyperglycemia), which is harmful.

Insulin also helps your liver to metabolise (process) fats and to release them into the blood. While fats are a necessary source of energy, too much fat in the blood is bad for you. It is now thought that insulin resistance interferes with this process and causes an accumulation of triglyceride fats in the liver cells.

Having too much triglyceride and another lipid that may be better known, cholesterol, in the bloodstream is known as hyperlipidaemia. Cholesterol is also taken in from our diet and produced by the liver.

High levels of a so-called ‘bad’ cholesterol known as LDL cholesterol (low density lipoprotein cholesterol) can lead to heart disease. Counter to this, there is a ‘good’ cholesterol (HDL, high density lipoprotein cholesterol) that removes the LDL cholesterol and gets rid of it through the liver.

Besides the increase in weight problems for older children have been linked to levels of inactivity and the consumption of foods high in fat, salt and sugar.

Here are some advices:

The most important thing is portion control. Babies stomachs are only about the size of their hand. Thus they need to eat more often, and should, vs eating a few big meals. Two reasons, one is because over time if you feed your child more food then they can fit in their stomachs, it is causing the stomach to strech. Continous streching will lead to over-eating as it will take more food to feel full. Keeping within the limits of the stomach will ensure that they are eating enough without causing problems down the road. Second reason is that it can make them painfully full and ill feeling. Causing to be sluggish and sick, not a good thing. No one wants to feel like this.

Next is the kind of food they eat. Make sure that an array of veggies, fruits are available during the day. And fresh is better then canned as there is extra salt and things for veggies and extra sugar for fruits. Let them have as much as they want of this. But don’t force them to finish what you give them or what they take. Doing so will make them think that they have to eat everything even if they are full. You can always save what they did not eat until later.

This goes into the next thing of let them dictate when to eat. But this is only to a point. Some babies, like mine, will eat and eat and eat since she does not know that full feeling. There are times, and as she is getting older, these times are increasing, where she says she is full, and there is often food left on the plate. Don’t tell them that they need to finish everything, if they are full, then they are full. Being so young, they don’t eat out of stress or bordem just yet. Unless they are being taught to eat beyond being full, this is not yet aquired. And if they are able to know when they are hungry, wait until they tell you vs making food and having them sit down to eat. Learning to listen to your body can be a hard thing, especially if you have been eating to much, or not the right things (bad cravings), eating because others are eating, etc…

Babies who sleep fewer than 12 hours a day during the first two years of life have a higher risk of becoming overweight as preschoolers, a prospective study found.

Approximately 26% of children ages two through five years old are overweight or at risk for it. Previous studies in adults, adolescents, and older children have shown that sleep restriction alters hormone levels, which could stimulate hunger and increase weight gain, they said.

At ages six months, one year, and two years, mothers reported the number of hours their children slept in a 24-hour period, from which the investigators calculated a weighted average of daily sleep.

Sources: About Kids Healt, Baby Center

No related content found.