The association between maternal glucose concentration and child BMI at age 3 years.

Journal Article (Journal Article)


The objective of the study was to determine the association between child BMI at age 3 years and maternal glucose concentration among women without pre-existing diabetes or a gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) diagnosis.

Research design and methods

Data are from the Pregnancy Infection and Nutrition and Postpartum studies and include 263 mother-child pairs. Measured weights and heights at 3 years were used to calculate age- and sex-specific BMI z scores and percentiles. Multivariable linear regression models were used to examine associations of continuous BMI z scores with maternal glucose concentration. Modified Poisson regression estimated risk ratios of child overweight/obesity (BMI ≥ 85th percentile).


The mean (SD) maternal glucose concentration and prepregnancy BMI were 103.8 (23.7) mg/dL and 24.3 (5.9) kg/m(2), respectively. At 3 years, the mean (SD) child BMI z score was 0.29 (0.99), 20.9% were overweight/obese and 5.3% were obese. In the adjusted model, when compared with glucose concentration <100 mg/dL, a concentration ≥ 130 mg/dL was associated with significantly higher child BMI z score at 3 years (estimated z score difference of 0.39 [95% CI: 0.03-0.75]). With the use of the same reference category, a concentration ≥ 130 mg/dL was associated with an approximate twofold greater risk of child overweight/obesity (adjusted risk ratio 2.34 [95% CI: 1.25-4.38]).


Fetal exposure to high maternal glucose concentration in the absence of pre-existing diabetes or GDM may contribute to the development of overweight/obesity in the offspring, independent of maternal prepregnancy BMI.

Full Text

Duke Authors

Cited Authors

  • Deierlein, AL; Siega-Riz, AM; Chantala, K; Herring, AH

Published Date

  • February 2011

Published In

Volume / Issue

  • 34 / 2

Start / End Page

  • 480 - 484

PubMed ID

  • 21216858

Pubmed Central ID

  • PMC3024372

Electronic International Standard Serial Number (EISSN)

  • 1935-5548

International Standard Serial Number (ISSN)

  • 0149-5992

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)

  • 10.2337/dc10-1766


  • eng