Maternal obesity, chances of death of adult offspring and some research suggestions

Increased chances of death of adult offspring of obese mothers (Credit: Jug Jones/Digital Journal)Main Point:

Researchers have found that maternal obesity during pregnancy increases the chances of premature death in adult offsprings.

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BMI chart (Credit: UK Metric Association)
BMI chart (Credit: UK Metric Association)


Obesity is a condition of being unhealthily overweight that is also becoming a problem in case of women of reproductive age. In United States and Europe, nearly 64% of women of reproductive age are overweight while 35% of women are obese.

According to different studies on animals and human beings, it has been found that maternal obesity may create some adverse environments in uterus that may result in harmful effects in offspring.


Researches, in the present study, worked on 37,709 people with birth records from 1950 to present day. They found increased chances of hospital admissions of the offspring of obese mothers as compared to the normal mothers. Moreover, the offspring of overweight mothers also had more chances of adverse outcomes such as cerebrovascular disease, peripheral artery disease, and other cardiovascular diseases.

Researchers have also reported increased chances of death in offspring from mothers with low or high BMI as compared to the offspring adults from the mother with BMI of 23. The leading cause of death was cardiovascular disease (24% of deaths in men and 13% in women) and cancer (26% of deaths in men and 42% in women).

“Our findings highlight the urgent need for strategies to prevent obesity in women of childbearing age and the need to assess the offspring of obese mothers for their cardiovascular risk,” Researchers noted.

Research suggestions:

You can research on the effects of intrauterine environment on the offspring.

Researchers have also noted that “further work in animal models is necessary to disentangle the prenatal effects of maternal obesity from postnatal environmental effects.”

This research is showing the relationship between maternal obesity and the increased chances of death of adult offspring while the research on the relation of paternal obesity and the increased chances of death or adverse outcomes in adult offspring can be done.


Reynolds RM, Allan KM, Raja EA, Bhattacharya S, McNeill G, Hannaford PC, Sarwar N, Lee AJ, Bhattacharya S, & Norman JE (2013). Maternal obesity during pregnancy and premature mortality from cardiovascular event in adult offspring: follow-up of 1 323 275 person years. BMJ (Clinical research ed.), 347 PMID: 23943697

Usman Zafar Paracha

Usman Zafar Paracha is a sort of entrepreneur. He is the author of "Color Atlas of Statistics", and the owner of an Android game "Faily Rocket."