Nav: Home

Even 'healthy' weight gain raises pregnancy diabetes risk

April 04, 2017

University of Queensland School of Public Health researcher Akilew Adane said women who gained more than 2.5 per cent of their body weight each year had almost triple the risk of gestational diabetes compared to women who maintained a stable weight.

"Women with only a small weight gain each year (1.5 to 2.5 per cent of body weight) doubled their risk of gestational diabetes," Mr Adane said.

"Surprisingly, even women who were underweight or in the normal BMI range had an increased risk of gestational diabetes when they gained weight - even if they remained within the healthy weight category.

"Women with small weight gains within the healthy BMI range doubled their risk of gestational diabetes compared to women whose weight remained stable."

Obesity is a known risk factor for gestational diabetes, which can lead to large babies, birth complications and long-term health risks for mothers and children.

Mr Adane said researchers set out to see what impact weight change had in the years leading up to pregnancy.

They tracked more than 3000 participants from the Women's Health Australia study (also known as the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women's Health).

The women, aged between 18 and 23 when they joined the study in 1996, have answered regular surveys on their weight, physical activity, lifestyle, health issues, and pregnancies ever since.

"It's important for women and their clinicians to be aware that, even in the healthy BMI range, gaining a kilogram or two a year can be a health risk," Mr Adane said.

"For instance, a 60-kilogram, 166-centimetre woman is in a healthy BMI range, but if she gains 1.14kg each year for seven years (about two per cent of her body weight) her risk of gestational diabetes would double compared to a woman whose weight remained stable.

"It's likely that women who continue to gain weight through early adulthood may experience a modest, progressive insulin resistance, which is further exacerbated by pregnancy, even though their weight is still within the normal range."

The research is published in Diabetes Research and Clinical Practice and will be presented at the 15th World Congress of Public Health this week.
-end-


University of Queensland

Related Public Health Articles:

Public health guidelines aim to lower health risks of cannabis use
Canada's Lower-Risk Cannabis Use Guidelines, released today with the endorsement of key medical and public health organizations, provide 10 science-based recommendations to enable cannabis users to reduce their health risks.
Study clusters health behavior groups to broaden public health interventions
A new study led by a University of Kansas researcher has used national health statistics and identified how to cluster seven health behavior groups based on smoking status, alcohol use, physical activity, physician visits and flu vaccination are associated with mortality.
Public health experts celebrate 30 years of CDC's prevention research solutions for communities with health disparities
It has been 30 years since CDC created the Prevention Research Centers (PRC) Program, currently a network of 26 academic institutions across the US dedicated to moving new discoveries into the communities that need them.
Public health experts support federally mandated smoke-free public housing
In response to a new federal rule mandating smoke-free policies in federally funded public housing authorities, three public health experts applaud the efforts of the US Department of Housing and Urban Development to protect nonsmoking residents from the harmful effects of tobacco exposure.
The Lancet Public Health: UK soft drinks industry levy estimated to have significant health benefits, especially among children
The UK soft drinks industry levy, due to be introduced in April 2018, is estimated to have significant health benefits, especially among children, according to the first study to estimate its health impact, published in The Lancet Public Health.
Social sciences & health innovations: Making health public
The international conference 'Social Sciences & Health Innovations: Making Health Public' is the third event organized as a collaborative endeavor between Maastricht University, the Netherlands, and Tomsk State University, the Russian Federation, with participation from Siberian State Medical University (the Russian Federation).
Columbia Mailman School Awards Public Health Prize to NYC Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T.
Dr. Mary T. Bassett, Commissioner of the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, was awarded the Frank A.
Poor health literacy a public health issue
America's poor record on health literacy is a public health issue, but one that can be fixed -- not by logging onto the internet but by increased interaction with your fellow human beings, a Michigan State University researcher argues.
Despite health law's bow to prevention, US public health funding is dropping: AJPH study
Although the language of the Affordable Care Act emphasizes disease prevention -- for example, mandating insurance coverage of clinical preventive services such as mammograms -- funding for public health programs to prevent disease have actually been declining in recent years.
'Chemsex' needs to become a public health priority
Chemsex -- sex under the influence of illegal drugs -- needs to become a public health priority, argue experts in The BMJ this week.

Related Public Health Reading:

Best Science Podcasts 2019

We have hand picked the best science podcasts for 2019. Sit back and enjoy new science podcasts updated daily from your favorite science news services and scientists.
Now Playing: TED Radio Hour

Changing The World
What does it take to change the world for the better? This hour, TED speakers explore ideas on activism—what motivates it, why it matters, and how each of us can make a difference. Guests include civil rights activist Ruby Sales, labor leader and civil rights activist Dolores Huerta, author Jeremy Heimans, "craftivist" Sarah Corbett, and designer and futurist Angela Oguntala.
Now Playing: Science for the People

#520 A Closer Look at Objectivism
This week we broach the topic of Objectivism. We'll be speaking with Keith Lockitch, senior fellow at the Ayn Rand Institute, about the philosophy of Objectivism as it's taught through Ayn Rand's writings. Then we'll speak with Denise Cummins, cognitive scientist, author and fellow at the Association for Psychological Science, about the impact of Objectivist ideology on society. Related links: This is what happens when you take Ayn Rand seriously Another Critic Who Doesn’t Care What Rand Thought or Why She Thought It, Only That She’s Wrong Quote is from "A Companion to Ayn Rand"