OBJECTIVES: Our aim was to examine the associations between high BMI and changes in BMI status during the first 7 years of life and asthma and allergic sensitization at age 8 years.
METHODS: A birth cohort of newborn infants was followed for 8 years. Repeated parental questionnaires provided information on environmental exposures and health outcomes. Information on height and weight during childhood was retrieved from preschool and school health care records. The analyses included the 2075 children for whom information was available on weight and height, as well as on asthma, at age 8 years.
RESULTS: A high BMI (≥85th percentile) at age 1, 4, and/or 7 years was associated with an increased risk of asthma at age 8 years. However, no significant association was observed among children with high BMI at age 12 and/or 18 months (early age) or at age 4 years who developed a normal BMI by age 7 years. The risk was increased among children with high BMI at age 7 years, regardless of their earlier weight. Moreover, we observed an increased risk of sensitization to inhalant allergens among children with high BMI at age 7 years.
CONCLUSIONS: Our study indicates that high BMI during the first 4 years does not increase the risk of asthma at school age among children who have developed a normal weight by age 7 years. However, high BMI at age 7 years is associated with an increased risk of asthma and sensitization to inhalant allergens.
- BAMSE —
- Swedish abbreviation for Children, Allergy, Milieu, Stockholm, Epidemiology
- CI —
- confidence interval
- OR —
- odds ratio
- Accepted September 9, 2011.
- Copyright © 2012 by the American Academy of Pediatrics