Chubby babies are super adorable. I should know—I have one. But has too much baby chubbiness become a problem? Some research points to yes.
According to a recent study, more than 30 percent of babies are overweight or obese at age 9 months. And the trend continued in this study of 7,500 babies: At age 2, 34 percent of the toddlers were overweight or obese. While some of the kids who were overweight at 9 months returned to normal weights by age 2, clearly some of the other kids made up for them. The researchers plan to look further into the variables that may contribute to obesity, including income, parental employment status and daycare.
We’ve seen stories of putting babies on diets and now the opposite end of the spectrum, baby obesity. While I don’t think growth charts tell the whole story of infant and toddler health, experts recommend exclusive breastfeeding and portion control once babies move on to solid foods to help prevent obesity.
My daughter, who was exclusively breastfed until we started solids recently, has almost been off the charts for weight since her 4-month visit. Am I worried she’s on the fast track to obesity? Not at all. Even though the doctor was a little surprised at my daughter packing on the pounds so quickly, I’m confident she’s just storing up for some serious crawling-cardio ahead. —Erin