Tomorrow's Health: Antidepressants & Obesity Linked?


Story Updated: Jun 24, 2014

Women who take antidepressants during pregnancy may be increasing their child's risk for obesity.

Researchers in Canada found that medications known as SSRIs cause fat to accumulate in a child's liver, which can lead to obesity and type 2 diabetes later in life. About 20 percent of women in the U.S. take antidepressants during pregnancy.

A study in California looked at possible links between pesticide exposure and autism. Researchers at U.C. Davis found women who live near farms that use chemical pesticides are at a two-thirds higher risk of having a child with autism or other developmental delays. The study said a baby's developing brain may be more vulnerable to chemical exposure.

Researchers in North Carolina are finding the health benefits of cleaner air. A study from Duke University said that since the state's pollution controls went into effect in the 1990s, there's been a decline in death rates from respiratory illnesses. Research showed that cracking down on auto and factory emissions coincided with fewer deaths from emphysema, asthma and pneumonia.

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