Antibiotics Lead to Weight Gain in Kids
In recent years, professional guidelines have advised doctors to be more cautious than they have been in the past about prescribing antibiotics because the bacteria that the drugs fight become resistant. Now, researchers have found another problem with antibiotic use in kids: extra weight gain. They studied nearly 150,000 kids ages 3 to 18, accounting for factors that can affect kids’ weight. Those with at least one antibiotic prescription in the past year and at least seven in their lifetime had gained an average of 3 pounds more by age 15 than did kids who never took antibiotics. It’s not clear why there’s a connection between antibiotics and weight, but researchers think it might relate to the drugs’ effect on the balance between “good” and “bad” bacteria in the gut that help people process nutrients and calories. But keep in mind: The study doesn’t prove antibiotics directly cause weight gain.
Source: International Journal of Obesity, published online Oct. 21, 2015