What is it about?

The socio-economic environment (SEE) of a neighborhood has been associated with health outcomes including obesity risk in older children and adults, but little is known of its association with obesity in children at age two. We used a measure of SEE, the Deprivation Index, to examine risk of increased BMIz and obesity in children aged 12-24 months in Cincinnati, OH. We found that living anywhere outside of the most affluent neighborhoods was associated with an increased BMIz score and increased risk of obesity. We also found that longer breastfeeding duration reduced obesity risk.

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Why is it important?

Obesity in early childhood is highly predictive of obesity later in life. We know that there a large disparities in obesity rates by race and income in the US. Identifying both neighborhood SEE and breastfeeding as predictors of early childhood obesity risk provides a way to focus resources into areas and methods shown to positively affect outcomes.


Young children are the most vulnerable in our society and I hope that this paper helps people to see that where we live affects us all. Environment is much more than pollution-our neighborhood in many ways is a predictor of our lived experiences.

Dr. Shannon C Conrey
University of Cincinnati

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: Neighbourhood socio‐economic environment predicts adiposity and obesity risk in children under two, Pediatric Obesity, August 2022, Wiley, DOI: 10.1111/ijpo.12964.
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