Women who are obese before pregnancy put child at risk

Women who are obese before they become pregnant may be putting their child at a disadvantage. New research shows that reading and math scores for kids ages 5 to 7 were lower if the mother was obese before she got pregnant. Obesity can alter how a baby receives nutrients and grows inside the womb.

“Fetal period is known as a critical period of brain development, where any disruption in the development during this sensitive period may cause sustained or permanent changes in structures or functions,”  says Rika Tanda at Ohio State University.

Future moms can give their children the best chance at success by maintaining a healthy weight.

The study in the Maternal and Child Health Journal was supported by the National Institutes of Health.