POSTED: Wednesday, May 23, 2012 - 11:30pm
UPDATED: Wednesday, May 23, 2012 - 11:34pm
NBC NATIONAL NEWS — Chunky baby legs and cheeks are a normal part of infancy, but when the baby fat lingers into childhood the risk for overweight and obesity rises.
Now doctors say a mother's Vitamin D status during pregnancy may be related to her child's weight.
Researchers in the UK studied nearly one thousand pregnant women. Researchers looked at their Vitamin D levels and then tracked their childrens' weight.
Scientists found women with low Vitamin D levels had children with more body fat when they were six years old.
The overweight risk remained even after researchers took other factors into account, like a mother's weight gain during pregnancy and the childrens' physical activity levels.
The researchers say a link between low Vitamin D and obesity has been established in children and adults, but this is one of the first studies to show the risk could start before children are born.