Background: Childhood body mass index (BMI) trajectory classes are rarely linked to early puberty risk, particularly among Chinese children. We estimated early puberty risk across BMI trajectory classes, investigated factors contributing to pubertal development, and examined differences in final adult height between children exhibiting early and nonearly pubertal maturation across the classes. Methods: The Taiwan Children Health Study recruited 10-year-old children in 2010 from 14 Taiwanese communities and resurveyed them at age 11, 12, and 18 years. The study comprised 3109 children (50.4% boys) with available data for BMI (age 6–11 years) and pubertal stages (age 11, 12, and 18 years). Results: Classes 1–4 were persistently healthy weight, rapid BMI growth, chronically overweight/obese, and early transient overweight/obese. Children in class 3 exhibited the highest risk of early pubertal maturation. Puberty genetic score, low sleep quality, and high fat-free mass collectively explained 15% of the variance in Tanner stages among class 3 children. Early pubertal maturation was considered to cause short and tall stature in boys and girls, respectively. Conclusions: Modifying sleep quality and fat-free mass may reduce early puberty risk in children with chronic overweight/obesity. Vigorous physical activity may reduce adiposity and increase the final adult height in the children.
ASJC Scopus subject areas