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News Link • Health and Physical Fitness

Children born to obese, diabetic mothers have higher risk of autism

•, Liam Casey

Researchers at the University of California, Davis, found that mothers with Type 2 diabetes or gestational diabetes were more than twice as likely to give birth to a developmentally delayed child, according to the study “Maternal metabolic conditions and risk for austim and other neurodevelopmental disorders,” published in the most recent issue of Pediatrics, the journal of the American Academy of Pediatrics.

“Over a third of U.S. women in their childbearing years are obese and nearly one-tenth have gestation or Type 2 diabetes during pregnancy,” said lead author Paula Krakowiak in a press release.

“Our finding that these maternal conditions may be linked with neurodevelopmental problems in children raises concerns and therefore may have serious public health implications.”

Obese mothers were 66 per cent more likely to have a child with autism compared to normal-weight mothers, while diabetic moms had a slightly higher chance of giving birth to an autistic child.

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