Advertisement

Maternal Smoking and Infant Low Birth Weight: Exploring the Biological Mechanism Through the Mother’s Pre-pregnancy Weight Status

  • Weihui ZhangEmail author
  • Tse-Chuan Yang
Article
  • 21 Downloads

Abstract

Maternal smoking has been found to adversely affect birth outcomes, such as increasing the odds of having low birth weight infants. However, the mechanisms explaining how a mother’s smoking is linked to a child’s low birth weight status are underexplored. This study merged two nationally representative datasets in the United States (US)—the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth 1979 (NLSY79) and the NLSY79 Child and Young Adult (NLSYCYA)—to examine whether maternal weight status before pregnancy serves as a biological mechanism. We applied a recently developed mediation analysis technique to a data sample of 6550 mother–child pairs, and we compared the estimated coefficients across nested probability models. We found that maternal body mass index (BMI) (in kg/m2), a widely used measure of weight status, reduces the odds of delivering a low birth weight infant, and this mechanism explains about 10.2% of the adverse impact of maternal smoking on having a low birth weight child. Moreover, when categorizing maternal pre-pregnancy BMI into four weight statuses (i.e., underweight, normal weight, overweight, and obese), we found that, in contrast to mothers with normal weight status, underweight mothers are 70% more likely to have a low birth weight child. Our findings suggest that maternal weight status plays a role in understanding how maternal smoking affects low birth weight outcome, indicating that maintaining a proper weight status for women who plan to give birth may be a possible policy to promote infant health.

Keywords

Maternal smoking Mediation analysis Low birth weight (LBW) Weight status Body mass index (BMI) 

Notes

References

  1. About Adult BMI | Healthy Weight | CDC. (2019, March 1). Retrieved June 21, 2019, from https://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/assessing/bmi/adult_bmi/index.html
  2. Andersson, K., & Arner, P. (2001). Systemic nicotine stimulates human adipose tissue lipolysis through local cholinergic and catecholaminergic receptors. International Journal of Obesity and Related Metabolic Disorders, 25, 1225–1232.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  3. Barker, D. J. (1995). Fetal origins of coronary heart disease. BMJ : British Medical Journal, 311(6998), 171–174.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Barker, D. J. P. (2002). Fetal programming of coronary heart disease. Trends in Endocrinology and Metabolism, 13(9), 364–368.  https://doi.org/10.1016/S1043-2760(02)00689-6.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  5. Benowitz, N. L. (2003). Cigarette smoking and cardiovascular disease: Pathophysiology and implications for treatment. Progress in Cardiovascular Diseases, 46, 91–111.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  6. Bernstein, I. M., Mongeon, J. A., Badger, G. J., Solomon, L., Heil, S. H., & Higgins, S. T. (2005). Maternal smoking and its association with birth weight. Obstetrics and Gynecology, 106(5), 986–991.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. Bhutta, A. T., Cleves, M. A., Casey, P. H., Cradock, M. M., & Anand, K. J. S. (2002). Cognitive and behavioral outcomes of school-aged children who were born preterm: A meta-analysis. JAMA, 288(6), 728–737.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  8. Blencowe, H., Krasevec, J., Onis, M. de, Black, R. E., An, X., Stevens, G. A., … Cousens, S. (2019). National, regional, and worldwide estimates of low birthweight in 2015, with trends from 2000: A systematic analysis. The Lancet Global Health, 7(7), e849–e860.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  9. Breen, R., Karlson, K. B., & Holm, A. (2013). Total, direct, and indirect effects in logit and probit models. Sociological Methods & Research, 42(2), 164–191.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  10. Case, A., Fertig, A., & Paxson, C. (2005). The lasting impact of childhood health and circumstance. Journal of health economics, 24(2), 365–389.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  11. Center of Disease Control (2014). Calculating BMI using the english system. Retrieved Jan 1, 2019, from https://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpao/growthcharts/training/bmiage/page5_2.html
  12. Chiolero, A., Bovet, P., & Paccaud, F. (2005). Association between maternal smoking and low birth weight in Switzerland: The EDEN study. Swiss medical weekly, 135(35–36), 525–530.Google Scholar
  13. Chiolero, A., Faeh, D., Paccaud, F., & Cornuz, J. (2008). Consequences of smoking for body weight, body fat distribution, and insulin resistance. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 87, 801–809.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  14. Conley, D., Strully, K. W., Bennett, N. G., & Bennett, N. G. (2003). The starting gate: Birth weight and life chances. Berkeley: University of California Press.Google Scholar
  15. Currie, J., & Moretti, E. (2007). Biology as destiny? Short- and long-run determinants of intergenerational transmission of birth weight. Journal of Labor Economics, 25(2), 231–264.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  16. Curtis, J. P., Selter, J. G., Wang, Y., Rathore, S. S., Jovin, I. S., Jadbabaie, F., … Krumholz, H. M. (2005). The obesity paradox: Body mass index and outcomes in patients with heart failure. Archives of Internal Medicine, 165(1), 55–61.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  17. Ehrenberg, H. M., Dierker, L., Milluzzi, C., & Mercer, B. M. (2003). Low maternal weight, failure to thrive in pregnancy, and adverse pregnancy outcomes. American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology, 189(6), 1726–1730.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  18. Ferland, S., & O’Brien, H. T. (2003). Maternal dietary intake and pregnancy outcome. Journal of Reproductive Medicine, 48(2), 86–94.Google Scholar
  19. Fraser, A. M., Brockert, J. E., & Ward, R. H. (1995). Association of young maternal age with adverse reproductive outcomes. New England Journal of Medicine, 332(17), 1113–1118.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  20. Frederick, I. O., Williams, M. A., Sales, A. E., Martin, D. P., & Killien, M. (2008). Pre-pregnancy body mass index, gestational weight gain, and other maternal characteristics in relation to infant birth weight. Maternal and Child Health Journal, 12(5), 557–567.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  21. Godfrey, K. M., & Barker, D. J. (2000). Fetal nutrition and adult disease. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 71(5), 1344s–1352s.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  22. Godfrey, K. M., & Barker, D. J. (2001). Fetal programming and adult health. Public Health Nutrition, 4(2b), 611–624.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  23. Goldenberg, R. L., & Culhane, J. F. (2007). Low birth weight in the United States. The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 85(2), 584S–590S.  https://doi.org/10.1093/ajcn/85.2.584S.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  24. Gould, J. B., Davey, B., & LeRoy, S. (1989). Socioeconomic differentials and neonatal mortality: Racial comparison of California singletons. Pediatrics, 83(2), 181–186.Google Scholar
  25. Hack, M., Flannery, D. J., Schluchter, M., Cartar, L., Borawski, E., & Klein, N. (2002). Outcomes in young adulthood for very-low-birth-weight infants. New England Journal of Medicine, 346(3), 149–157.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  26. Hack, M., Gerry Taylor, H., Drotar, D., Schluchter, M., Cartar, L., Andreias, L., et al. (2005). Chronic conditions, functional limitations, and special health care needs of school-aged children born with extremely low-birth-weight in the 1990s. JAMA, 294(3), 318–325.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  27. Hainer, V., & Aldhoon-Hainerová, I. (2013). Obesity paradox does exist. Diabetes Care, 36(Supplement 2), S276–S281.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  28. Han, Z., Mulla, S., Beyene, J., Liao, G., & McDonald, S. D. (2010). Maternal underweight and the risk of preterm birth and low birth weight: A systematic review and meta-analyses. International Journal of Epidemiology, 40(1), 65–101.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  29. Hellerstein, M. K., Benowitz, N. L., Neese, R. A., Schwartz, J. M., Hoh, R., Jacob, P.,… & Faix, D. (1994). Effects of cigarette smoking and its cessation on lipid metabolism and energy expenditure in heavy smokers. Journal of Clinical Investigation, 93, 265–272.Google Scholar
  30. Hiscock, R., Bauld, L., Amos, A., Fidler, J. A., & Munafò, M. (2012). Socioeconomic status and smoking: A review. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences, 1248(1), 107–123.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  31. Horne, R. S., Franco, P., Adamson, T. M., Groswasser, J., & Kahn, A. (2004). Influences of maternal cigarette smoking on infant arousability. Early Human Development, 79(1), 49–58.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  32. Horta, B. L., Victora, C. G., Menezes, A. M., Halpern, R., & Barros, F. C. (1997). Low birthweight, preterm births and intrauterine growth retardation in relation to maternal smoking. Peadiatric and perinatal epidemiology, 11(2), 140–151.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  33. Ioannides-Demos, L. L., Piccenna, L., & McNeil, J. J. (2010). Pharmacotherapies for obesity: Past, current, and future therapies. Journal of Obesity, 2011, 18.Google Scholar
  34. Jefferis, B. J., Power, C., & Hertzman, C. (2002). Birth weight, childhood socioeconomic environment, and cognitive development in the 1958 British birth cohort study. BMJ, 325(7359), 305.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  35. Juntunen, K. S., Läärä, E. M., & Kauppila, A. J. (1997). Grand grand multiparity and birth weight. Obstetrics and Gynecology, 90(4), 495–499.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  36. Karlson, K. B., & Holm, A. (2011). Decomposing primary and secondary effects: A new decomposition method. Research in Social Stratification and mobility, 29(2), 221–237.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  37. Karlson, K. B., Holm, A., & Breen, R. (2012). Comparing regression coefficients between same-sample nested models using logit and probit: A new method. Sociological Methodology, 42(1), 286–313.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  38. Kharkova, O. A., Grjibovski, A. M., Krettek, A., Nieboer, E., & Odland, J. Ø. (2017). Effect of smoking behavior before and during pregnancy on selected birth outcomes among singleton full-term pregnancy: A Murmansk County Birth Registry Study. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, 14(8), 867.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  39. Knopik, V. S., Marceau, K., Palmer, R. H., Smith, T. F., & Heath, A. C. (2016). Maternal smoking during pregnancy and offspring birth weight: A genetically-informed approach comparing multiple raters. Behavior Genetics, 46(3), 353–364.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  40. Kowlessar, N. M., Jiang, H. J., & Steiner, C. (2006). Hospital stays for newborns, 2011: Statistical brief# 163.Google Scholar
  41. Kramer, M. S. (1998). Maternal nutrition, pregnancy outcome and public health policy. CMAJ: Canadian Medical Association Journal, 159(6), 663.Google Scholar
  42. Kramer, M. S., Morin, I., Yang, H., Platt, R. W., Usher, R., McNamara, H., et al. (2002). Why are babies getting bigger? Temporal trends in fetal growth and its determinants. Journal of Pediatrics, 141, 538–542.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  43. Lavie, C. J., Alpert, M. A., Arena, R., Mehra, M. R., Milani, R. V., & Ventura, H. O. (2013). Impact of obesity and the obesity paradox on prevalence and prognosis in heart failure. JACC Heart Failure, 1(2), 93–102.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  44. Lavie, C. J., McAuley, P. A., Church, T. S., Milani, R. V., & Blair, S. N. (2014). Obesity and cardiovascular diseases: Implications regarding fitness, fatness, and severity in the obesity paradox. Journal of the American College of Cardiology, 63(14), 1345–1354.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  45. Luo, Z. C., Wilkins, R., & Kramer, M. S. (2006). Effect of neighbourhood income and maternal education on birth outcomes: A population-based study. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 174(10), 1415–1420.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  46. Martin, J. A., Hamilton, B. E., Ventura, S. J., Osterman, M. J., & Mathews, T. J. (2013). Births: Final data for 2011. National vital statistics reports (Vol. 62). Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics.Google Scholar
  47. Martin J.A., Hamilton B.E., Osterman M.J.K., Driscoll A.K., & Drake P. (2018) Births: Final data for 2017. National vital statistics reports (Vol. 67). Hyattsville, MD: National Center for Health Statistics.Google Scholar
  48. McAdams, M. A., Van Dam, R. M., & Hu, F. B. (2007). Comparison of self-reported and measured BMI as correlates of disease markers in US adults. Obesity, 15(1), 188.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  49. McGovern, M. E. (2019). How much does birth weight matter for child health in developing countries? Estimates from siblings and twins. Health Economics, 28(1), 3–22.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  50. Merchant, S. S., Momin, I. A., Sewani, A. A., & Zuberi, N. F. (1999). Effect of prepregnancy body mass index and gestational weight gain on birth weight. Journal of Pakistan Medicine Association, 49(1), 23–25.Google Scholar
  51. Mustillo, S. A., Lizardo, O. A., & McVeigh, R. M. (2018). Editors’ comment: A few guidelines for quantitative submissions. American Sociological Review, 83(6), 1281–1283.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  52. Peoples-Sheps, M. D., Siegel, E., Suchindran, C. M., Origasa, H., Ware, A., & Barakat, A. (1991). Characteristics of maternal employment during pregnancy: Effects on low birthweight. American Journal of Public Health, 81(8), 1007–1012.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  53. Perkins, K. A. (1992). Metabolic effects of cigarette smoking. Journal of Applied Physiology, 72, 401–409.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  54. Roth, J., Hendrickson, J., Schilling, M., & Stowell, D. W. (1998). The risk of teen mothers having low birth weight babies: Implications of recent medical research for school health personnel. Journal of School Health, 68(7), 271–275.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  55. Secker-Walker, R. H., & Vacek, P. M. (2003). Relationships between cigarette smoking during pregnancy, gestational age, maternal weight gain, and infant birthweight. Addictive Behaviors, 28(1), 55–66.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  56. Sexton, M., & Hebel, J. R. (1984). A clinical trial of change in maternal smoking and its effect on birth weight. JAMA, 251(7), 911–915.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  57. Sicuri, E., Bardají, A., Sigauque, B., Maixenchs, M., Nhacolo, A., Nhalungo, D., … Menéndez, C. (2011). Costs associated with low birth weight in a rural area of Southern Mozambique. PLoS ONE, 6(12), e28744.  https://doi.org/10.1371/journal.pone.0028744 CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  58. Strauss, R. S., & Dietz, W. H. (1998). Growth and development of term children born with low birth weight: Effects of genetic and environmental factors. The Journal of pediatrics, 133(1), 67–72.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  59. Strobino, D. M., Ensminger, M. E., Kim, Y. J., & Nanda, J. (1995). Mechanisms for maternal age differences in birth weight. American Journal of Epidemiology, 142(5), 504–514.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  60. Thorsdottir, I., Torfadottir, J. E., Birgisdottir, B. E., & Geirsson, R. T. (2002). Weight gain in women of normal weight before pregnancy: Complications in pregnancy or delivery and birth outcome. Obstetrics and Gynecology, 99, 799–806.Google Scholar
  61. United States Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), Division of Vital Statistics, Natality public-use data 2007–2017, on CDC WONDER Online Database, October 2018. Retrieved Feb 3, 2019, from http://wonder.cdc.gov/natality-current.html.
  62. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. (2001). The Surgeon General’s call to action to prevent and decrease overweight and obesity. Rockville, MD: U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Public Health Service, Office of the Surgeon General.Google Scholar
  63. Valassi, E., Scacchi, M., & Cavagnini, F. (2008). Neuroendocrine control of food intake. Nutrition, Metabolism & Cardiovascular Diseases, 18, 158–168.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  64. Ventura, S. J., Hamilton, B. E., Mathews, T. J., & Chandra, A. (2003). Trends and variations in smoking during pregnancy and low birth weight: Evidence from the birth certificate, 1990–2000. Pediatrics, 111(Supplement 1), 1176–1180.Google Scholar
  65. Vicari, S., Caravale, B., Carlesimo, G. A., Casadei, A. M., & Allemand, F. (2004). Spatial working memory deficits in children at ages 3-4 who were low birth weight, preterm infants. Neuropsychology, 18(4), 673.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  66. Vohr, B. R., Wright, L. L., Dusick, A. M., Mele, L., Verter, J., Steichen, J. J.,… & Delaney-Black, V. (2000). Neurodevelopmental and functional outcomes of extremely low birth weight infants in the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development Neonatal Research Network, 1993–1994. Pediatrics, 105(6), 1216-1226.Google Scholar
  67. Wilcox, A. J. (1993). Birth weight and perinatal mortality: The effect of maternal smoking. American Journal of Epidemiology, 137(10), 1098–1104.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  68. Wilcox, M. A., Chang, A. M., & Johnson, I. R. (1996). The effects of parity on birthweight using successive pregnancies. Acta Obstetricia et Gynecologica Scandinavica, 75(5), 459–463.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  69. Windham, G. C., Hopkins, B., Fenster, L., & Swan, S. H. (2000). Prenatal active or passive tobacco smoke exposure and the risk of preterm delivery or low birth weight. Epidemiology, 11, 427–433.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  70. World Health Organization. (1993). International statistics classification of diseases and related health problems (Vol. 2). Geneva: WHO.Google Scholar
  71. World Health Organization. (2014). Global Nutrition Targets 2025: Low birth weight policy brief. Retrieved June 20, 2019, from WHO website: http://www.who.int/nutrition/publications/globaltargets2025_policybrief_lbw/en/ .
  72. Yu, Z., Han, S., Zhu, J., Sun, X., Ji, C., & Guo, X. (2013). Pre-pregnancy body mass index in relation to infant birth weight and offspring overweight/obesity: A systematic review and meta-analysis. PLoS ONE, 8(4), e61627.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© Springer Nature B.V. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of SociologyUniversity at Albany, State University of New YorkAlbanyUSA
  2. 2.Department of Sociology, Center for Social and Demographic AnalysisUniversity at Albany, State University of New YorkAlbanyUSA

Personalised recommendations