Background: Gestational dietary intake has a significant effect on fetal growth and birth consequences. Objectives: This study aims to examine the effect of maternal food intake before and during pregnancy on birth weight. Most studies in this area are cross-sectional. This study enjoys a prospective cohort design. Considering the nutritional status of the mother and other related factors affecting birth weight, appropriate knowledge is needed to prevent and reduce risk factors and promote the health status of children and community. Methods: As a prospective cohort study, a total of 585 pregnant women of first trimester, visiting Tehran Metropolitan Area public health centers and private sectors [clinics and hospitals], were interviewed at first phase, Pre-gestational dietary intake was obtained by a 168-item semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire. The second interview collected food recalls from 342 women. The final stage included extraction of birth weight information from health records for 485 births. Univariate and multivariate analysis was used to explore the effect of maternal and nutritional factors on birth weight. Results: The results of the analysis show that direct measures of nutrition, measured as food group consumption at first and third trimester of pregnancy, had no significant effect on birth weight once the confounding factors were controlled. Of control variables included in the analysis twin pregnancy outcome, pregnancy number, pre-pregnancy weight [marginally significant], and gestational age [marginally significant] were associated with birth weight. Conclusions: The results of this study show no significant role of mother’s nutrition during pregnancy on birth weight, while long term nutrition outcomes such as pre-pregnancy weight had significant role. It seems the main reasons behind less important role of pregnancy nutrition on birth weight in this study include: a] food intake deficiency is not a major problem for participants, and b] cross sectional data on food intake are less important on outcome of pregnancy weight than long term nutritional status outcome variables such as mother’s weight and height.
Published Date: 2021-12-23;