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C-sections are linked to obesity in adults

BABIES born by Caesarean section have an increased risk of becoming heavyweight adults, say researchers.

An analysis of data on 38,000 individuals found those born by Caesarean section were 22% more likely to be obese than those who had natural births.

They had a 26% greater chance of being overweight, as defined by their body mass index.

Scientists warned mothers to be aware of the possible long-term consequences of Caesareans.

Effects of a surgery-assisted birth on a baby's gut bacteria and genes could be two reasons for the trend, they believe. Professor Neena Modi, from Imperial College London, said: "There are good reasons why C-section may be the best option for many mothers and their babies, and C-sections can on occasion be life-saving.

"However, we need to understand the long-term outcomes in order to provide the best advice to women who are considering Caesarean delivery.

"This study shows that babies born by C-section are more likely to be overweight or obese later in life. We now need to determine whether this is the result of the C-section, or if other reasons explain the association."

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