Some components reflecting a healthy diet during pregnancy appear to be associated with a modest increase in offspring birth weight, whereas some unhealthy components slightly reduce neonatal weight

In August 2019 researchers from Germany published their study to assess the association between prenatal diet and weight of the newborn. A total of 2,286 pregnant women were involved in the study. Dietary information was collected via food frequency questionnaires before or in the 12th and after the 29th week of gestation. Results showed that the consumption of vegetables (41 g per portion at week 12; 37 g per portion at week 29), fruit (15 g per portion at week 29) and quality of the diet as assessed using the Healthy Eating Index were associated with a higher birth weight. In contrast, sugar-sweetened beverages (11 g per portion at week 12; 8 g per portion at week 29), higher sugar consumption at week 12 and early pregnancy alcohol intake were associated with a lower birth weight. Most other dietary factors were not associated with neonatal weight. The researchers therefore concluded that some components reflecting a healthy maternal diet were associated with a modest increase in offspring birth weight, whereas some unhealthy components slightly reduced neonatal weight.

G√ľnther J et al. Associations between the Prenatal Diet and Neonatal Outcomes-A Secondary Analysis of the Cluster-Randomised GeliS Trial. Nutrients. 2019 Aug 13;11(8). pii: E1889.

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