Eating Habits of Children Born after Maternal Bariatric Surgery
Mothers who underwent bariatric surgery (BS) before pregnancy have worrisome eating habits, but little is known about the eating habits of their offspring. EFFECTOR is a cross-sectional, long-term follow-up study of 4–11-year-old children born from mothers that underwent bariatric surgery before pregnancy (n = 36), mothers with overweight/obesity (OW/OB) in a control group (n = 71), and mothers with a normal weight (NW) in a second control group (n = 35). Data on anthropometry and on eating
... y and on eating habits obtained through a Food Frequency Questionnaire were collected prospectively. The children's body mass index (BMI) scores significantly correlated with maternal pre-pregnancy BMI. The prevalence of overweight and obesity was the highest in children of the BS group (38.9% vs. 15.5% for children of the OW/OB group and 5.7% for those of the NW group; p = 0.004). Meal-skipping behavior was comparable between the groups. There was no difference in fruit and vegetable consumption. The BS group consumed more low-calorie sweetened beverages compared to the NW group (p = 0.01) but less fruit juice compared to the NW and OW/OB groups (p = 0.01). Our results may indicate a sugar-avoiding behavior in children of the BS group, fitting dietary maternal habits in a strategy to prevent dumping syndrome. In conclusion, maternal pre-pregnancy bariatric surgery does not alter unhealthy eating behaviors and the risk of development of overweight during childhood in their children.