Nutrition and Growth Yearbook 2018

Editor(s): Berthold Koletzko, Raanan Shamir, Dominique Turck, Moshe Phillip.

Assessing the adequacy of growth in a child is in the DNA of all health professionals involved in pediatric care. The fulfill of children’s nutritional requirements is indispensable in order to achieve optimal growth, thereby allowing them to have an optimal nutritional status. In this fourth Year Book on Nutrition and Growth worldwide clinical experts summarize the latest research papers across many aspects of the topic, from the physiology and mechanism of growth, to obesity, chronic disease, malnutrition, impact of maternal nutrition on fetal growth, early nutrition and stunting in developing countries. The book is based on articles published from 1 July 2016 to 30 June 2017.


Obesity, Metabolic Syndrome and Nutrition

Author(s): Shlomit Shalitin, Luis A. Moreno

Childhood obesity is a major worldwide health concern, widely recognized as a risk factor for the development of cardio metabolic comorbidities. Known to affect its occurrence are genetic, environmental, lifestyle, and behavioral factors. A growing body of evidence suggests that the increased risk for childhood obesity is associated with early-life factors, such as pregnancy weight gain, birth weight, rapid postnatal growth, and gestational diabetes.

This chapter reviews a selection of notable focusing on the relation between nutrition, obesity, and metabolic syndrome in childhood and young adulthood.

Term and Preterm Infants

Author(s): Dominique Turck, Johannes B. van Goudoever

In the present chapter, 15 articles related to nutrition in preterm and term infants are included, discussing the following topics:

  • Vitamin D, iodine, and protein intake in premature babies during the first months of life.
  • Role of post-discharge formula and the impact of the feeding schedule on time to achieve full enteral feeding in preterm infants.
  • Safety and suitability of human milk oligosaccharides (HMOs) added to an infant formula, and the effect of a young child formula on the iron and vitamin D status of healthy young European children.
  • Addition of long chain polyunsaturated fatty acid to infant formula
  • Complementary feeding
  • Food protein-induced enterocolitis syndrome (FPIES)
  • Prevention of vitamin K deficiency bleeding (VKDB) in newborn infants.


Author(s): Carlo Agostoni, Silvia Bettocchi

Gestation and early childhood are crucial periods in child neurodevelopment and are critically dependent on several factors. Nutritional deficiencies may affect infant health, in particular brain development. Maternal nutritional status during pregnancy and breastfeeding and nutrients intake during infancy and childhood should be decided towards ensuring the genetic potential of brain growth and optimal functional outcomes through all the life-course. Several studies regarding the interaction of nutrients with neurocognitive performance of children have been performed. The microbial community represents the last promising frontier of the links between diet and development.

This chapter comprehended a selection of recent articles including clinical trials, observational studies or reviews, in the area of nutrition and cognition.

Nutrition and Growth in Chronic Disease

Author(s): Corina Hartman, Raanan Shamir

Environmental, behavioral (nutrition and physical activity), and disease-related factors can prevent attainment of full genetic potential for growth. Undernutrition is most often the cause of growth faltering and poor skeletal development. Disease-related factors, such as malabsorption, inflammation, and immobility also have profound effects. These effects are illustrated in selected abstracts in this chapter discussing diseases such as inflammatory bowel disease (IBD), cystic fibrosis (CF), celiac disease (CD), and children with food allergies.

Early Nutrition and Its Effect on Growth, Body Composition and Later Obesity

Author(s): Kamilla G. Eriksen, Mads V. Lind, Anni Larnkjær, Christian Mølgaard, Kim F. Michaelsen

Adequate nutrition in the first 2 years of life is essential for both short- and long-term health. Malnutrition in the early years of life increases the risk of later chronic diseases. There is a wealth of studies available within this area of research, and this chapter specifically looks at growth and body composition as outcome measures in countries where obesity and related diseases in later life is a large public health problem.

10 publications are part of this short review, including the topic of early nutrition and its effect on growth, body composition, and later obesity.

Malnutrition and Catch-Up Growth during Childhood and Puberty

Author(s): Michael Yackobovitch-Gavan, Naama Fisch Shvalb, Zulfiqar A. Bhutta

Wasting affects an estimated 52 million children under age 5 years, and stunting, an estimated 165 million children. The need for new nutritional interventions was highlighted in a recent paper on the worldwide progress towards the 2025 World Health Organization (WHO) targets for nutrition, namely, reducing and maintaining the prevalence of childhood wasting to less than 5% and reducing the number of stunted children by 40%. This chapter reviews the data on malnutrition and catch-up growth published between July 1, 2016 and June 30, 2017.

Pregnancy: Impact of Maternal Nutrition on Intrauterine Fetal Growth

Author(s): Liran Hiersch, Yariv Yogev

This chapter reviews important articles concerning the impact of maternal nutrition during pregnancy on intrauterine fetal growth. We carefully selected human studies, mainly of randomized controlled or prospective design, along with several animal studies dealing with the effect of several nutrient supplementations on fetal growth and metabolic programming. The chapter focus on studies addressing the issue of fetal adiposity and maternal nutrition during pregnancy that may affect this outcome.

Stunting in Developing Countries

Author(s): Andrew M. Prentice

Although stunting rates in low- and middle-income countries have been declining quite rapidly, with many countries meeting their Millennium Development Goal targets, there remain an estimated 160 million stunted children worldwide. As one of its Nutrition Targets, the World Health Organization (WHO) has set an ambitious goal of a further 40% reduction by 2025. Unfortunately, the rate of reduction in Africa is so slow that it is being more than offset by population growth such that the absolute numbers of stunted children is rising in this region.

In this chapter there is a preponderance of descriptive papers that simply summarize the anthropometric statistics by region, country, and area or population group with some of these papers including analyses of factors predictive of poor growth.

The Physiology and Mechanism of Growth

Author(s): Adda Grimberg, Colin Hawkes, Moshe Phillip

This chapter brings together selected papers related to growth physiology that illustrate the broad range of influences on and variations in child growth. Some highlight the specific nutritional factors of non-cow milk beverage consumption by children and protein-specific effects on skeletal development in a rat model. Others looked at the growth hormone (GH) system, ranging from diagnostic and pathologic issues to non-height effects of growth hormone treatment. Another group explored the other side of the more commonly seen short stature spectrum: a variant of early puberty, a genetic cause of short stature that is associated with acceleration not deceleration of skeletal maturity (bone age), and an up-to-date review of the differential diagnoses and treatment of excessive tall stature.