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Effect of maternal pre-pregnancy BMI and weekly gestational weight gain on the development of infants

Li, Chao, Zeng, Lingxia, Wang, Duolao, Dang, Shaonong, Chen, Tao, Watson, Victoria, Yan, Hong
Nutrition journal 2019 v.18 no.1 pp. 6
body mass index, cohort studies, equations, experimental design, infant development, infant growth, infants, linear models, nutrition, pregnant women, weight gain
OBJECTIVE: The aim of the present study is to identify the average effect across different time points and to specify the time effects of maternal pre-pregnancy BMI and weekly gestational weight gain on the mental development and physical growth of infants. METHODS: The present cohort study used a repeated measures study design that began in 2004 with follow up at 3, 6, 12, 18, and 24 months of age. The participants were a subset from a controlled, cluster-randomized, double-blind trial. Bayley Scales of Infant Development (BSID) were used to estimate the mental development of infants. A generalized estimating equation linear model was used to estimate the effects of maternal BMI and weight gain. RESULTS: The average effect of maternal BMI and weight gain on the weight for age Z scores (WAZ), length for age Z scores (LAZ) and mental development index (MDI) across the different time points of infants was significant. In addition, the maternal BMI and weight gain were positively and significantly associated with the WAZ and LAZ in infants of different ages. However, the effect of weekly gestational weight gain was significant only during the earlier period of life (3 months, Coefficient: 11.15, 95%CI: 4.89–17.41). CONCLUSIONS: Our results indicate positive effects of pre-pregnancy and prenatal nutrition on the physical growth of infants. Weekly gestational weight gain of the pregnant women had a positive effect on the mental development of the infants, but this effect appears to decline over time.