Just read a study on gestational diabetes (GDM) and the risk for children who's moms had GDM to develop diabetes at a younger ages. Children were tested at age 11 for the risk factors that identify pre-diabetes (obesity, high blood pressure, high triglycerides, low HDL and blood sugar in the high-normal range). Children who's moms did have GDM, but the infants were of average birth weight had similar rates of the risk factors as children who's moms didn't have diabetes - about 20% had at least one risk factor. If, however, the mom had GDM and the baby was 9 pounds or more at birth, 50% of those children had at least 1 risk factor and 15% had 3 factors for diabetes (which is how pre-diabetes also known as metabolic syndrome is determined) at age 11.
Getting the word out about postpartum screening for diabetes and making family lifestyle changes for healthy eating, exercise, and maintaining a healthy weight sure sounds like a great way to stop the obesity and diabetes epidemic.
Metabolic Syndrome in Childhood: Association with Birth Weight, Maternal Obesity, and Gestational Diabetes Mellitus. Booney et al. Pediatrics 2005; 115;e290