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Simplifying Science

The Start of Puberty Keeps Inching Backwards

Here goes my broken record: yes, puberty is starting younger and younger for our kids. This article highlights a new study that confirms what we have known for some time: obese kids are likely to develop sooner than non-obese kids. This has to do with hormone conversion in fat cells - obese bodies face a higher load of the hormones that send the body into puberty. But non-obese kids are at risk too. Every child in grammar school is facing hormonal shifts younger than her (or his!) parents did. Each study that comes along helps take us one step further down the road of understanding why. Hopefully, we can start doing something about it because these kids aren't ready - physically or emotionally - for what is happening to them. And we have no idea what the long term ramifications will be...

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