Autism & Obesity
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Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are a group of developmental disabilities that can cause significant social, communication and behavioral challenges. CDC estimates that about 1 in 88 children has been identified with an ASD. Because every child with an ASD is so unique, ongoing research is focused on providing essential data on ASDs, searching for risk factors and causes, and developing resources that help identify children with ASDS as early as possible.
A study published in Pediatrics recently suggests that the obesity epidemic may be contributing to the rising number of children diagnosed with autism. Researchers showed that compared to non-obese mothers, those who were obese before pregnancy had a 60% increase in the likelihood of having a child with autism and a doubling in risk of having a child with another type of cognitive or behavioral delay. This may be yet another reason to strongly consider how obesity affects our every aspect of our lives.