Junk food in pregnancy means babies are ‘more likely to be obese’

An addiction to junk food can be learnt in the womb, say experts

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If you overeat junk food during your pregnancy and while breastfeeding your child is more likely to grow up to be obese, according to the latest research from Australian scientists.

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The increased consumption of junk food means that as your children grow up, they need to eat more sugary and fatty foods to get the good feeling of a satisfactory meal, reports the Telegraph.

Dr Bev Muhlausler, from Adelaide University, says this also encourages children to “overeat” and would find it “permanently” harder to achieve a healthy body weight.

Researchers particularly considered the impact of peanut butter, sugary breakfast foods, nutella and lard, concluding that mothers’ diets needed to be looked at to tackle the “rapidly rising rates of both childhood and adult obesity”.

Parents can help lower the long-term health problems with a well-balanced healthy diet after weaning. However, the researchers concluded the children are “always going to have a predisposition for overconsumption of junk food and obesity.”

The study, published in the FASEB journal, is the first time scientists have demonstrated the long-term impact of maternal junk food consumption during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

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