They also point to yet another reason for women to quit smoking before pregnancy, according to lead study author Dr Aimin Chen, a researcher at the US national institute of Environmental Health Sciences. Besides low birth weight, prenatal smoking has been shown to raise the risk of miscarriage, premature delivery and other pregnancy complications, Chen noted in an interview.
The current study, published in the International Journal of Epidemiology, is based on data from nearly 35000 children who were born between 1959 and 1965 and followed through the age of eight. Mothers reported on their smoking habits during pregnancy, and the children had their weight and height measured at ages one, three, four, seven and eight.
Overall, children of smokers were more likely to be overweight or on the verge of becoming overweight by the age of eight. At that age, the risk of being overweight climbed about 17 per cent for every 10 cigarettes a mother smoked per day while pregnant.
The connection between prenatal smoking and childhood weight remained when the researchers accounted for factors such as family income and the mother's weight, race and education.
Random Tip- Stretching your skin to the fag ends of its youthfulness? :- We all know that smoking seriously affects the internal organs (the lungs and heart), and causes cancer, but did you know that it also affects skin, body weight and shape? It's easy to spot a chronic smoker - by the nicotine stained-teeth and nails, sallow complexion, dark lips, and dark circles. Now given a choice between a healthy complexion and your favorite brand of cigarettes, which would you choose?
The Reason Smoking makes the skin dull. Nicotine, the active ingredient in cigarettes, makes the entire circulatory capacity of the body sluggish. The smoke from the cigarette contains high levels of carbon monoxide-which is absorbed by the hemoglobin in the blood. The blood can absorb carbon monoxide 200 times faster than oxygen, so a lot of oxygen is displaced by carbon monoxide, slowly poisoning the skin and the organs, and starving them of life-giving oxygen. The liver is pushed to the max to oust these chemicals, and is unable to perform its normal functions. As a result, the skin loses its healthy glow. Skin damaged by smoking has a yellowish to grayish tint, and a wasted appearance. Also, smoking constricts the blood vessels, so wound and injuries take time to heal. While these effects are not as life threatening as heart and lung disease, they can, nevertheless, increase the risk of more serious disorders and have a noticeable ageing effect on the skin. -Random Tip
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This is the largest study to date linking prenatal smoking to a higher risk of obesity into adulthood.
Tip: Switching to light cigarettes can be harmful too. Nicotine patches help in reducing the craving for a smoke.
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