Endocrine/Metabolic Biomarkers Predicting Early Childhood Obesity Risk
Piotr Socha and Christian Hellmuth (EU Childhood Obesity Group) co-presented on endocrine and metabolic biomarkers predicting early childhood obesity risk. In the European Union Childhood Obesity Program (CHOP) trial, investigators compared low- and high-protein infant formulas in a multicentre study. Consumption of a high-protein formula was associated with increased body mass index and a 2.43-fold greater obesity risk at school age compared with low protein intake during infancy. Compared to the low-protein formula, blood and urine analyses showed that the high-protein formula was associated with significantly higher levels of branched-chain and essential amino acids, while levels of insulin-like growth factor-1 were also significantly higher in the high-protein group. Compared to formula-fed infants, breastfed infants generally had lower plasma amino acid levels and a less active insulin-like growth factor-1 axis and lower insulin production. However, reducing infant formula protein content leads to an endocrine and metabolic profile that more closely approximates breast milk.