Short Course: Lower bone density in girls who smoke

Lower bone density in girls who smoke

Smoking in teenage girls is associated with slower development of bone mineral density, a new study reports. The scientists studied 262 healthy girls ages 11 to 19, using questionnaires and interviews to assess their smoking habits. The researchers also measured the girls' bone density at the hip and lumbar spine three times at one-year intervals. Smokers entered adolescence with the same lumbar and hip bone density as nonsmokers, but by age 19, they were about a year behind on average. After adjusting for other factors that affect bone health — height, weight, hormonal contraceptive use and more — the researchers found that even relatively low or irregular rates of smoking were independently associated with lower bone density.

C-section babies more likely to be overweight

Children born via cesarean section are slightly more likely than babies delivered vaginally to become heavy or obese, according to a new review of studies. The results don't prove that c-sections cause kids to put on weight, but says the link between delivery and obesity is important to keep in mind. "The potential health burden of obesity and other diseases associated with c-section births should not be neglected," the study says. The research team collected the results from nine studies that included more than 200,000 people. People were 33 percent more likely to be overweight or obese if they were born by c-section, researchers report in the International Journal of Obesity. The risk for childhood obesity in particular was somewhat higher - about a 40 percent increase over kids born vaginally. The study said the increase in risk was modest, but that it persists into adulthood. As for adults, they found that those who were born surgically were 50 percent more likely to be obese than those who were born vaginally.

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