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Parental education and family income affect birthweight, early longitudinal growth and body mass index development differently
The Queen Silvia Children’s Hospital, The Sahlgrenska Academy at Gothenburg University, Gothenburg, Sweden.ORCID iD: 0000-0001-7773-9231
Halmstad University, School of Health and Welfare, Centre of Research on Welfare, Health and Sport (CVHI).ORCID iD: 0000-0002-2631-2825
The Queen Silvia Children’s Hospital, The Sahlgrenska Academy at Gothenburg University, Gothenburg, Sweden.
Institute of Medicine, The Sahlgrenska Academy at Gothenburg University, Gothenburg, Sweden.
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2018 (English)In: Acta Paediatrica, ISSN 0803-5253, E-ISSN 1651-2227Article in journal (Refereed) Epub ahead of print
Abstract [en]

AIM: This study investigated the effects of two parental socio-economic characteristics, education and income, on growth and risk of obesity in children from birth to 8 years of age.

METHODS: Longitudinal growth data and national register-based information on socio-economic characteristics were available for 3,030 Swedish children. The development of body mass index (BMI) and height was compared in groups dichotomised by parental education and income.

RESULTS: Low parental education was associated with a higher BMI from 4 years of age, independent of income, immigrant background, maternal BMI and smoking during pregnancy. Low family income was associated with a lower birthweight, but did not independently predict BMI development. At 8 years of age, children from less educated families had a three times higher risk of obesity, independent of parental income. Children whose parents had fewer years of education but high income had significantly higher height than all other children.

CONCLUSION: Parental education protected against childhood obesity, even after adjusting for income and other important parental characteristics. Income-related differences in height, despite similar BMIs, raise questions about body composition and metabolic risk profiles. The dominant role of education underscores the value of health literacy initiatives for the parents of young children. ©2018 Foundation Acta Pædiatrica.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Chichester: Wiley-Blackwell Publishing Inc., 2018.
Keywords [en]
Birthweight, Childhood obesity, Health promotion, Parental education, Socio-economic factors
National Category
Pediatrics
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:hh:diva-36352DOI: 10.1111/apa.14215PubMedID: 29315777Scopus ID: 2-s2.0-85041611646OAI: oai:DiVA.org:hh-36352DiVA, id: diva2:1185812
Note

Shared first authorship: Rebecka Bramsved & Susann Regber

Available from: 2018-02-26 Created: 2018-02-26 Last updated: 2018-03-26

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Bramsved, RebeckaRegber, Susann

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