Childhood exposure to parental smoking and life-course overweight and central obesity


Annals of Medicine


Johanna M. Jaakkola, Suvi P. Rovio, Katja Pahkala, Jorma Viikari, Tapani Rönnemaa, Antti Jula, Harri Niinikoski, Juha Mykkänen, Markus Juonala, Nina Hutri-Kähönen, Mika Kähönen, Terho Lehtimäki & Olli T. Raitakari


To evaluate the association between childhood parental smoking exposure and the risk of overweight/obesity from childhood to adulthood.

This study leverages the data from two longitudinal population based cohort studies, the Cardiovascular Risk in Young Finns Study between years 1980–2011/2012 (YFS; N = 2,303; baseline age 3–18 years) and the Special Turku Coronary Risk Factor Intervention Project between years 1989–2009/2010 (STRIP; N = 632; baseline age 7 months). Weight, height and waist circumference were measured from childhood to adulthood. Overweight/obesity was defined as body mass index ≥25 kg/m2 in adults and using the Cole criteria in children. Central obesity was defined as waist circumference > 100/90 cm in men/women and as a waist-to-height ratio > 0.50 in children. Statistical analyses were adjusted for age, sex, socioeconomic status, smoking, birth weight, parental ages, diet and physical activity.

Childhood parental smoking exposure was associated with increased risk for life-course overweight/obesity (YFS: RR1.13, 95%CI 1.02–1.24; STRIP: RR1.57, 95%CI 1.10–2.26) and central obesity (YFS: RR1.18, 95%CI 1.01–1.38; STRIP: RR1.45, 95%CI 0.98–2.15).

Childhood exposure to parental smoking is associated with increased risk of overweight/obesity over the life-course.


February 22, 2021

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