Who would have thought that the way you were born, whether vaginally or by c-section, could affect your weight during adulthood? Recent studies associate cesarean section deliveries with higher body mass index numbers later on in life.
The study defines overweight as a body mass index of twenty-five or more. Obesity is defined as a body mass index of thirty or more. Researchers gathered information from combining studies which resulted in 142,702 participants representing ten different countries. This truly diverse sampling lends the study significant strength.
Among the babies included in the study, those delivered by c-section were twenty-six percent more likely to be overweight and twenty-six percent more likely to be obese than babies who were delivered vaginally. The study also noted that the type of delivery in either case – natural, forceps or vacuum extraction vaginal births, and pre-labor or in-labor cesarean births – didn’t seem to make a difference.
Researchers still have some study to complete, but their goal is that pregnant mothers will be fully informed – both on short-term and long-term outcomes – when opting for a cesarean delivery. Of course, there is always the possibility of emergency surgery. In those instances, mothers have no choice in the matter. However, it’s helpful to know what long-term data indicates, so you can help your child plan for the future.
Check out our resources section for additional information on this topic as well as guides on weight loss and obesity.