Abstract P417: Trans Fatty Acids in Serum are not Associated with Weight Gain in School-age Children
Introduction: Childhood obesity is an independent predictor of later life obesity and cardiovascular disease risk. Yet, the biological processes that underlie excess weight gain among children are not well understood. There is some evidence that long-term intake of trans fatty acids may be associated with weight gain in animal and human studies. Higher intake of fast foods, which are rich in trans fatty acids, has been linked to overweight status among school-age children. However, the specific effects of trans fatty acids are unknown.
Hypothesis: We hypothesized that trans fatty acids will be associated with faster weight gain during school years.
Methods: We quantified trans fatty acids by gas-liquid chromatography in serum samples of 668 children aged 5-12 y at the time of recruitment into an ongoing cohort study carried out in Bogota (Colombia) since 2006. Serum levels of 16:1, 18:1, 18:2 and total trans fatty acids were used as biomarkers of intake. Anthropometric characteristics were measured periodically for a median of 30 months. BMI-for-age Z-scores (BAZ) were calculated with the use of the World Health Organization reference. We estimated mean change in BAZ over follow-up according to quartiles of each trans fatty acid at baseline using mixed effects regression models with restricted cubic splines.
Results: Mean ± SD 16:1, 18:1, 18:2, and total trans fatty acids, as % of total serum fatty acids, were 0.21 ± 0.06, 0.86 ± 0.36, 0.92 ± 0.27, and 1.99 ± 0.59, respectively. None of them were associated with change in BAZ after adjusting for sex, baseline age, and socioeconomic status. Analyses stratified by sex yielded similar null results.
Conclusions: Biomarkers of trans fatty acid intake were not associated with weight gain in school-age children. It is possible that there is not enough variability in the range of intake for this population to detect associations. Alternatively, the potential harmful effects of trans fatty acids may not become apparent until adulthood after long-term cumulative exposure.
Author Disclosures: A. Baylin: None. W. Perng: None. M. Mora-Plazas: None. C. Marin: None. E. Villamor: None.
- © 2014 by American Heart Association, Inc.