Do these antibiotics make me look fat?

There has been a lot of interest and conflicting reports about whether antibiotics contribute to obesity.  Another interesting study on this theme:

  • ET Rogawski et al. JPGN 2017; 65: 350-6. 

The authors followed 1954 children twice weekly from birth to 2 years of age as part of the MAL-ED study.  There were 8 study sites, including in Bangladesh, India, Brazil, Pakistan, Nepal, South Africa, Peru, and Tanzania. Key finding:

  • Antibiotic use before 6 months of age was associated with increased weight from 6 months to 2 years of age.
  • Antibiotic use after 6 months did not affect growth.

The authors speculate: “If treatment of infections were the main mechanism, we would expect antibiotic exposure after 6 months to also have an impact.” Thus, they conclude that effects on the microbiome are likely a more important explanation.

My take (borrowed from te authors):  “Antibiotic use in low-resource settings” can improve growth, though the long-term consequences are not known.  In high-income settings, weight gain secondary to antibiotic exposure is more likely to be detrimental.

Related blog posts:

Patient T-shirt

 

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.