(NEW YORK) -- For the first time, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) is recommending that the prevention of childhood obesity should start before the age of 2.
In their updated recommendations, presented as part of a report on parents' impact on obesity prevention, the nation’s top pediatricians’ group advises mothers to keep a healthy weight during pregnancy, avoid smoking even before pregnancy and to breastfeed.
After birth, recommendations include transitioning children to healthy foods, adequate sleep, active play and eliminating sedentary entertainment like watching TV. The AAP already recommends no TVs in children’s bedrooms at any age.
The AAP points to the best evidence to date, which suggests that “fetal life and the first two years of life may be critical for the programming of obesity and related behaviors.”
Also, early habits might have long-term consequences for later preferences of activities and foods, which contribute to obesity development.
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