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Exerc Sci > Volume 31(2); 2022 > Article
Exercise Science 2022;31(2): 159-167.
The Association between Maternal Folate Status and Childhood Obesity-Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis
Junechul Kim1,2 , Bo-Eun Yoon3 , Jinho Park1 , Eun Hye Kwon1 , Kyungun Kim4 , Sukho Lee1
1Department of Counseling, Health, and Kinesiology, College of Education and Human Development, Texas A&M University-San Antonio, San Antonio, USAA
2Graduate School of Physical Education, Dankook University, Yongin, korea
3Department of Molecular Biology, Dankook University, Cheonan, Korea; 4School of Business Administration, University of Central Missouri, Warrensburg, USA
Correspondence  Sukho Lee , Tel: +1-210-784-2537, Email: slee@tamusa.edu
Received: April 2, 2022;  Accepted: May 10, 2022.  Published online: May 31, 2022.
*Junechul Kim and Bo-Eun Yoon contributed equally to this work.
The Association between Maternal Folate Status and Childhood Obesity-Systematic Review and Meta-AnalysiPURPOSE:
Maternal nutrition plays a crucial role in fetal growth and lifelong health outcomes. Folate is an essential methyl donor in the epigenetic programming of offspring. This review and meta-analysis was conducted to compile the evidence reported thus far to identify associations between maternal folate status and childhood obesity.
A keyword/reference search was performed in EBSCOhost and Web of Science databases. A CMA program was used for a meta-analysis to estimate the pooled effect of maternal folate status on childhood obesity in offspring and to examine the influence of moderating variables on the overall effect.
Better maternal folate intake was associated with a lower risk of childhood obesity: the overall effect size (ES; Hedges’ g) was 0.168 (95% CI=0.075 to 0.260, p<.001; small effects; cf., Cohen’s criteria). Moderator analysis revealed that the ≥Q statistic for the age group was statistically significant (Qb=4.730, df=1. p=.030; heterogeneity of ES). In offspring <7 years and >7 years, the ES was 0.277 (95% CI=0.151, 0.404) and 0.089 (95% CI=-0.025, 0.202), respectively. The study design was a statistically significant variable (Qb=4.310, df=1. p=.038; heterogeneity of ES). In cohort studies, ES was 0.251 (95% CI=0.135, 0.367), whereas in randomized controlled trial group, ES was 0.062 (95% CI=-0.073, 0.197).
Maternal folate intake significantly affects childhood obesity, and the effect of maternal folate status is stronger in children younger than 7 years.
Key words: Folate, Folic acid, Child obesity, Meta-analysis, Review
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