Background: Research is needed to identify early life risk factors associated with different developmental paths leading to overweight by adolescence. Objectives: To model heterogeneity in overweight development during middle childhood and identify factors associated with differing overweight trajectories. Methods: Data was drawn from the Quebec Longitudinal Study of Child Development (QLSCD; 1998-2010). Trained research assistants measured height and weight according to a standardized protocol and conducted yearly home interviews with the child's caregiver (mother in 98% of cases). Information on several putative early life risk factors for the development of overweight were obtained, including factors related to the child's perinatal, early behavioral family and social environment. Group-based trajectories of the probability of overweight (6-12 years) were identified with a semiparametric method (n=1678). Logistic regression analyses were used to identify early risk factors (5 months- 5 years) associated with each trajectory. Results: Three trajectories of overweight were identified: "early-onset overweight" (11.0%), "lateonset overweight" (16.6%) and "never overweight" (72.5%). Multinomial analyses indicated that children in the early and late-onset group, compared to the never overweight group, had 3 common types of risk factors: parental overweight, preschool overweight history, and large size for gestational age. Maternal overprotection (OR= 1.12, CI: 1.01-1.25), short nighttime sleep duration (OR=1.66, CI: 1.07-2.57), and immigrant status (OR=2.01, CI: 1.05-3.84) were factors specific to the early-onset group. Finally, family food insufficiency (OR=1.81, CI: 1.00-3.28) was weakly associated with membership in the late-onset trajectory group. Conclusions: The development of overweight in childhood follows two different trajectories, which have common and distinct risk factors that could be the target of early preventive interventions.
Pryor, L. E., Brendgen, M., Tremblay, R. E., Pingault, J. B., Liu, X., Dubois, L., … Côté, S. M. (2015). Early risk factors of overweight developmental trajectories during middle childhood. PLoS ONE, 10(6). https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0131231