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BMI trajectories associated with resolution of elevated youth BMI and incident adult obesity


Buscot, M-J and Thomson, RJ and Juonala, M and Sabin, MA and Burgner, DP and Lehtimaki, T and Hutri-Kahonen, N and Viikari, JSA and Jokinen, E and Tossavainen, P and Laitinen, T and Raitakari, OT and Magnussen, CG, BMI trajectories associated with resolution of elevated youth BMI and incident adult obesity, Pediatrics, 141, (1) Article e20172003. ISSN 0031-4005 (2018) [Refereed Article]

Copyright Statement

Copyright 2018 by the American Academy of Pediatrics

DOI: doi:10.1542/peds.2017-2003


Background and Objectives: Youth with high BMI who become nonobese adults have the same cardiovascular risk factor burden as those who were never obese. However, the early-life BMI trajectories for overweight or obese youth who avoid becoming obese adults have not been described. We aimed to determine and compare the young-childhood BMI trajectories of participants according to their BMI status in youth and adulthood.

Methods: Bayesian hierarchical piecewise regression modeling was used to analyze the BMI trajectories of 2717 young adults who had up to 8 measures of BMI from childhood (ages 3-18 years) to adulthood (ages 34-49 years).

Results: Compared with those with persistently high BMI, those who resolved their high youth BMI by adulthood had lower average BMI at age 6 years and slower rates of BMI change from young childhood. In addition, their BMI levels started to plateau at 16 years old for females and 21 years old for males, whereas the BMI of those whose high BMI persisted did not stabilize until 25 years old for male subjects and 27 years for female subjects. Compared with those youth who were not overweight or obese and who remained nonobese in adulthood, those who developed obesity had a higher BMI rate of change from 6 years old, and their BMI continued to increase linearly until age 30 years.

Conclusions: Efforts to alter BMI trajectories for adult obesity should ideally commence before age 6 years. The natural resolution of high BMI starts in adolescence for males and early adulthood for females, suggesting a critical window for secondary prevention.

Item Details

Item Type:Refereed Article
Keywords:body mass index, trajectories, child, adult, obesity
Research Division:Health Sciences
Research Group:Epidemiology
Research Field:Epidemiology not elsewhere classified
Objective Division:Health
Objective Group:Clinical health
Objective Field:Clinical health not elsewhere classified
UTAS Author:Buscot, M-J (Dr Marie-Jeanne Buscot)
UTAS Author:Magnussen, CG (Associate Professor Costan Magnussen)
ID Code:123257
Year Published:2018
Funding Support:National Health and Medical Research Council (1098369)
Web of Science® Times Cited:38
Deposited By:Menzies Institute for Medical Research
Deposited On:2018-01-02
Last Modified:2019-03-07

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