The number of children suffering from asthma has steadily increased in recent years. At an almost parallel rate, obesity has also increased. Researchers from the University of Southampton Faculty of Medicine recently completed a study on the implication of maternal obesity on infant weight and asthma. The study was published in the journal Thorax.

A total of 940 children were included in the study. Maternal BMI was measured using skin-fold testing and questionnaires were delivered to mothers at 6 months, one year, two years, three years and six years of age. When the children reached six years old, physical tests were used to determine asthma risk or diagnosis.

Conclusion: While transient wheeze was associated with increased maternal BMI, asthma was not. Researchers concluded that maternal obesity may increase the risk of transient wheeze, but children born to mothers with higher BMIs were not at increased risk of asthma or allergic predisposition.

Source: Pike KC, Inskip HM, Robinson SM, Cooper C, Godfrey KM, Roberts G, Lucas JS; the Southampton Women's Survey Study Group. The relationship between maternal adiposity and infant weight gain, and childhood wheeze and atopy. Thorax. 2013 Jan 3. doi: 10.1136/thoraxjnl-2012-202556.