Stephen J.LurieMD, PhD, Senior EditorIndividualAuthorJody W.ZylkeMD, Contributing EditorIndividualAuthor
In Reply: Longitudinal studies with repeated
measures over long periods of time, such as the one provided by Dr Poulton
and Ms Williams, can be instrumental in examining the influence of early life
exposures on chronic diseases of adolescence and adulthood. While imprecise
estimates due to a small sample size limit inferences, their data do raise
the possibility that the effects of breastfeeding may wax and wane over time.
However, why effects of breastfeeding on obesity in adolescents should be
stronger than effects in both younger and older individuals is not clear.
Larger prospective studies with careful measures of adiposity over the course
of life, as well as of infant feeding practices, would be useful to address
these and related questions.
Gillman MW, Colditz GA. Breastfeeding and Risk of Overweight—Reply. JAMA. 2001;286(12):1448-1450. doi:10.1001/jama.286.12.1447