Kids of Pregnant Smokers Risk
Early Adult Diabetes
by Daniel DeNoon
Jan. 4, 2002 -- Still smoking? Pregnant?
Here's a new reason to quit: your child risks early adult diabetes.
The findings come from a study of some 17,000
British children born in early 1958. Researchers checked on the
kids at ages 7 and 16 and again at 33.
Some of these young adults already had diabetes. Scott M. Montgomery
and Anders Ekbom of Sweden's Karolinska Institute found that risk
of diabetes was linked to how much a person's mother smoked during
the last five months of pregnancy. They reported the findings
in the Jan. 5 issue of The Lancet.
The more a mother smoked, the higher the risk.
Adult children of heavy-smoking mothers -- more than 10 cigarettes
a day -- had 4.5 times more diabetes than those whose moms didn't
smoke. Those whose mothers smoked a lot on some days and less
on other days ran nearly as high a risk.
"Smoking during pregnancy should
always be strongly discouraged," Montgomery and Ekbom
Still, not all of the diabetes risk could be blamed on moms.
Regardless of whether their mother smoked, risk of early diabetes
was higher in people who themselves smoked cigarettes