MedicalResearch.com Interview with:
Professor of Maternal and Perinatal Health
Joint Director of BARC
(Barts Research Centre for Women’s Health)
Women’s Health Research Unit | Multidisciplinary Evidence Synthesis Hub (MESH)
Barts and the London School of Medicine and Dentistry
R & D Director for Women’s Health
Queen Mary University of London
MedicalResearch.com: What is the background for this study? What are the main findings?
Response: Pregnant women who are overweight or obese, or who gain excess weight gain in pregnancy are at high risk of complications. We wanted to find
- If healthy diet and physical activity in pregnancy reduced weight gain, and improved outcomes for the mother and baby
- If the effects of the interventions differed according to the characteristics of the mother such as body mass index, parity, ethnicity, and underlying medical condition
We established a network (International Weight Management in Pregnancy i-WIP) of researchers from 16 countries, and 41 institutions to answer the above.
We found that women who followed a healthy diet and moderate physical activity gained less weight in pregnancy than other women; this beneficial effect was observed irrespective of mother’s body mass index, parity, ethnicity, and underlying medical condition.
Diet and physical activity in pregnancy has a beneficial effect on weight gain in pregnancy, and lowers the odds of caesarean section, and gestational diabetes.