Infant nutrition and its impact on adult diseases
UNDURTI N DASUND
Life Sciences, 13800 Fairhill Road, # 321, Shaker Heights, OH 44120, USAMember of AgroFOOD industry hi-tech’s Scientific Advisory Board
or insults during critical or sensitive periods of early life can have lifetime consequences and is termed “programming”.Programming stimuli may be generated endogenously such as hormonal signals or they may be environmental. Early nutritioncan be one important environmental programming factor. Thus, nutrition in infancy and/or fetal life induces lifetime effects onmetabolism, growth, and neurodevelopment andon major disease processes such as obesity,hypertension, diabetes, and atherosclerosis. It wassuggested that the 20th century epidemic ofcoronary heart disease (CHD) in Western countrieshave originated in fetal life. Adverse adultoutcomes with lower birth weight were found forblood pressure, impaired glucose tolerance, andtype 2 diabetes. It was suggested that what wasclaimed to be fetal in origin may in fact relate topostnatal nutrition and growth. This is supportedby the observation that post-natal life is alsoimportant for nutritional programming. Studiesshowed that infant nutrition in primatesp rogrammed l a ter obes i t y , andatherosclerosis. Human epidemiologicalstudies indicated that postnatal factors suchas breast-feeding can be related to laterCHD.