Study Links Obese Moms to Autistic Children

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New research suggests obesity during pregnancy may increase the chances of having a child with autism.

The study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics is one of the few finding a link between the two.

Although the research doesn't prove obesity causes autism, the authors say their results raise public health concerns because of the high level of obesity in the United States.

On average, women face a one in 88 chance of having a child with autism. This study found that obesity during pregnancy increase those odds to one in 53.

Researchers at the University of California-Davis studied about 1,000 California children, ages 2 to 5.

Previous research has also linked obesity during pregnancy with stillbirths, premature births, and some birth defects.

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