Earlier this week I discussed the results of an interesting paper which suggested that obesity surgery in women could reduce the risk of obesity in their future children. It generated some excellent discussion in the comments, with a few people expressing skepticism over the importance of the physiological mechanisms described in the paper (the discussion is ongoing, so feel free to head-over and share your two cents). As luck would have it, I recently interviewed my friend and colleague Zach Ferraro, who is currently studying a number of these mechanisms as part of his PhD. In our interview Zach explains how being overweight or underweight during pregnancy can impact the health of descendants generations down the road, the role that “fetal programming” may play in the current obesity epidemic, as well as the research currently being done in this area to tease out exactly how important these mechanisms are to childhood weight gain.
On that note, Zach is currently involved with a number of studies examining the impact of healthy lifestyle on prenatal development, so if you are pregnant or plan to become pregnant and live in the Ottawa-Gatineau area, he may be an excellent person for you to get in touch with. Details on his current study can be found here.
I have embedded the podcast of our interview below (email subscribers can listen on the the blog itself, or by subscribing via iTunes), and look forward to more discussion on this fascinating and complex topic!
McMillen, Rattanatray, Duffield, Morrison, MacLaughlin, Gentili, & Muhlhausler (2009). The Early Origins of Later Obesity: Pathways and Mechanisms Advances in Experimental Medicine and Biology : 10.1007/978-1-4020-9173-5_8