Prevention of obesity in childhood

M.A.B. Ernst

Research output: ThesisDoctoral ThesisInternal

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This dissertation examines whether the current rise in childhood obesity starts in the prenatal period and whether a secular trend in height can help explain why children have become heavier over the past eighty years. No prenatal secular trend was identified in this dissertation. A postnatal secular trend, however, was evident in terms of weight, height, and BMI. Small for gestational age (SGA) infants are more likely to develop obesity than normal birth weight infants.

Furthermore, data on height and weight in a healthy Dutch population were used to develop a prediction model to determine the risk of developing childhood obesity in infants born at a healthy weight. This prediction model is an important tool that can be used in child healthcare to prevent obesity later in life.
Original languageEnglish
QualificationDoctor of Philosophy
Awarding Institution
  • Maastricht University
  • Zimmermann, Luc, Supervisor
  • Gerver, Wilhelmus, Co-Supervisor
  • van der Hoeven, Mark, Co-Supervisor
Award date15 Apr 2015
Place of PublicationMaastricht
Print ISBNs9789082261455
Publication statusPublished - 2015


  • obesity
  • children
  • height
  • weight
  • prevention

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