Special Issue "Evaluation of Nutrition Interventions in Mothers and Children: Pre-pregnancy, Pregnancy, and Early Childhood"

A special issue of Nutrients (ISSN 2072-6643). This special issue belongs to the section "Nutrition Methodology & Assessment".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 May 2020).

Special Issue Editors

Dr. Ekaterina Maslova
Website
Guest Editor
1. ICON Clinical Research, 80 Wood Lane, White City, W12 0BZ London, United Kingdom
2. Department of Primary Care and Public Health, Imperial College London, Charing Cross Campus, The Reynolds Building, St Dunstan's Road, London W6 8RP, United Kingdom
Interests: pregnancy nutrition; lifecourse epidemiology; metabolic disease; gestational diabetes mellitus; child obesity; sex differences
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals
Prof. Dr. Nina Cecilie Overby
Website
Guest Editor
Department of Nutrition and Public Health, Priority Research Centre on Lifecourse Nutrition, University of Agder, Serviceboks 422, 4604, Kristiansand, Norway
Interests: food and nourishment early in life; dietary interventions; lifecourse epidemiology; nutrition in pregnancy; nutrition during preconception age; child nutrition; breastfeeding; pregnancy outcomes; child obesity

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

The importance of pregnancy and early postnatal life for maternal and child health has been well-established over the past few decades. Despite a growing understanding of the influence of maternal behaviour, including dietary intake, on pregnancy and child health, there remains a lack of clarity of the nature, timing, and causal pathways of effective interventions. Furthermore, the role of preconception and prepregnancy interventions in improving health outcomes still needs to be thoroughly evaluated, and evidence for this time window is of particular interest to scientists working in this field. This Special Issue welcomes contributions in the form of primary and secondary analyses of interventions implemented prepregnancy, during pregnancy, or in early childhood as well as rigorous systematic reviews on the topic. Interventions can be dietary and supplementation programs evaluating the effect on maternal and/or child outcomes, or behavioural interventions aimed as changing maternal dietary behaviour.

Dr. Ekaterina Maslova
Prof. Dr. Nina Cecilie Overby
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

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Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2000 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • Dietary pattern
  • Macronutrients
  • Micronutrients
  • Glycaemic index
  • Behaviour
  • Interventions
  • Pregnancy
  • Cardiometabolic health
  • Gestational weight gain
  • Gestational diabetes
  • Gestational hypertension
  • Preeclampsia
  • Foetal growth
  • Infant growth
  • Foetal adiposity
  • Child adiposity
  • Feeding behaviour
  • Neurocognitive outcomes
  • Asthma
  • Allergic disease
  • Bone health

Published Papers (7 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle
Instrument to Identify Food Neophobia in Brazilian Children by Their Caregivers
Nutrients 2020, 12(7), 1943; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12071943 - 30 Jun 2020
Abstract
This study aimed to develop a specific instrument to evaluate food neophobia focused on Brazilian children and to perform the content validation and internal semantic consistency and reproducibility evaluation of the instrument. Three steps were necessary to conduct the study: (i) development of [...] Read more.
This study aimed to develop a specific instrument to evaluate food neophobia focused on Brazilian children and to perform the content validation and internal semantic consistency and reproducibility evaluation of the instrument. Three steps were necessary to conduct the study: (i) development of the instrument, (ii) internal validation (content validation and semantic evaluation) of the food neophobia instrument using 22 experts in the first round and 20 of them in the second round, (iii) evaluation of the internal consistency and reproducibility of the instrument with the children’s caregivers, using the test–retest (where the same caregiver—n = 22—answered twice, with 24 h interval) and comparing responses between two caregivers (n = 44) of the same children (n = 22). We developed an instrument in Brazilian–Portuguese to evaluate children’s food neophobia based on the caregivers’ perceptions with 25 items divided into three domains (neophobia in general, neophobia for fruits and neophobia for vegetables). Our results indicated that the instrument has excellent internal consistency (>0.9) and reproducibility (>0.9) when answered by the caregiver who knows the child’s eating habits, indicating reliability to be applied in Brazil. In addition, when the two caregivers answered the instrument, we found a good reproducibility (>0.6), confirming the possibility to be answered by one of the caregivers. Further studies are necessary to complete external validation with a representative sample of the target group in Brazil, showing nationwide the profile of the population. The potential of a neophobia study would contribute to the implementation of effective strategies and guidelines to support parents and health professionals, especially those involved in health and nutrition, to identify traces of food neophobia or neophobic behavior. By accurately measuring food neophobia in children, families can prevent nutritional deficiencies throughout adolescence and adulthood, improving eating habits. Children usually have neophobias similar to the ones presented by their parents—and when early detected, these neophobias can be addressed. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Effect of a Short Message Service Intervention on Excessive Gestational Weight Gain in a Low-Income Population: A Randomized Controlled Trial
Nutrients 2020, 12(5), 1428; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12051428 - 15 May 2020
Abstract
Objectives: The objective of this trial was to investigate the effect of educational short message service (SMS), or text messages, on excessive gestational weight gain (GWG) in a low-income, predominantly overweight/obese population. Methods: Participants (n = 83) were mostly overweight/obese women recruited [...] Read more.
Objectives: The objective of this trial was to investigate the effect of educational short message service (SMS), or text messages, on excessive gestational weight gain (GWG) in a low-income, predominantly overweight/obese population. Methods: Participants (n = 83) were mostly overweight/obese women recruited at Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) clinics on the island of O’ahu, Hawai’i at 15–20 weeks gestational age. The intervention group received SMS on nutrition and physical activity during pregnancy designed to help them meet Institute of Medicine (IOM) guidelines for GWG and American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists guidelines for exercise, respectively. The control group received SMS about general health topics during pregnancy, excluding nutrition and physical activity. Both groups received one text message per week for eighteen weeks. GWG was defined as the difference between the last self-reported weight taken before delivery and participants’ self-reported weight before pregnancy. Differences between study groups were examined using t-tests and Chi-square tests. Linear regression models were used to examine association of GWG with study group and other factors. Results: GWG was similar (p = 0.58) in the control group (14.1 ± 11.4 kg) and the intervention group (15.5 ± 11.6 kg). The percentage of participants exceeding IOM guidelines for GWG was similar (p = 0.51) in the control group (50.0%, n = 17) and the intervention group (60.5%, n = 23). Conclusions: GWG was not significantly different between intervention and control groups. Trials that begin earlier in pregnancy or before pregnancy with longer intervention durations and varying message frequency as well as personalized or interactive messages may be needed to produce significant improvements. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Dietary Intervention in Pregnant Women with Gestational Diabetes; Protocol for the DiGest Randomised Controlled Trial
Nutrients 2020, 12(4), 1165; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12041165 - 22 Apr 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) annually affects 35,000 pregnancies in the United Kingdom, causing suboptimal health outcomes to the mother and child. Obesity and excessive gestational weight gain are risk factors for GDM. The Institute of Medicine recommends weight targets for women that are [...] Read more.
Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) annually affects 35,000 pregnancies in the United Kingdom, causing suboptimal health outcomes to the mother and child. Obesity and excessive gestational weight gain are risk factors for GDM. The Institute of Medicine recommends weight targets for women that are overweight and obese, however, there are no clear guidelines for women with GDM. Observational data suggest that modest weight loss (0.6–2 kg) after 28 weeks may reduce risk of caesarean section, large-for-gestational-age (LGA), and maternal postnatal glycaemia. This protocol for a multicentre randomised double-blind controlled trial aims to identify if a fully controlled reduced energy diet in GDM pregnancy improves infant birthweight and reduces maternal weight gain (primary outcomes). A total of 500 women with GDM (National Institute of Health and Care Excellence (NICE) 2015 criteria) and body mass index (BMI) ≥25 kg/m2 will be randomised to receive a standard (2000 kcal/day) or reduced energy (1200 kcal/day) diet box containing all meals and snacks from 28 weeks to delivery. Women and caregivers will be blinded to the allocations. Food diaries, continuous glucose monitoring, and anthropometry will measure dietary compliance, glucose levels, and weight changes. Women will receive standard antenatal GDM management (insulin/metformin) according to NICE guidelines. The secondary endpoints include caesarean section rates, LGA, and maternal postnatal glucose concentrations. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Overfeeding during Lactation in Rats is Associated with Cardiovascular Insulin Resistance in the Short-Term
Nutrients 2020, 12(2), 549; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12020549 - 20 Feb 2020
Cited by 1
Abstract
Childhood obesity is associated with metabolic and cardiovascular comorbidities. The development of these alterations may have its origin in early life stages such as the lactation period through metabolic programming. Insulin resistance is a common complication in obese patients and may be responsible [...] Read more.
Childhood obesity is associated with metabolic and cardiovascular comorbidities. The development of these alterations may have its origin in early life stages such as the lactation period through metabolic programming. Insulin resistance is a common complication in obese patients and may be responsible for the cardiovascular alterations associated with this condition. This study analyzed the development of cardiovascular insulin resistance in a rat model of childhood overweight induced by overfeeding during the lactation period. On birth day, litters were divided into twelve (L12) or three pups per mother (L3). Overfed rats showed a lower increase in myocardial contractility in response to insulin perfusion and a reduced insulin-induced vasodilation, suggesting a state of cardiovascular insulin resistance. Vascular insulin resistance was due to decreased activation of phosphoinositide 3-kinase (PI3K)/Akt pathway, whereas cardiac insulin resistance was associated with mitogen-activated protein kinase (MAPK) hyperactivity. Early overfeeding was also associated with a proinflammatory and pro-oxidant state; endothelial dysfunction; decreased release of nitrites and nitrates; and decreased gene expression of insulin receptor (IR), glucose transporter-4 (GLUT-4), and endothelial nitric oxide synthase (eNOS) in response to insulin. In conclusion, overweight induced by lactational overnutrition in rat pups is associated with cardiovascular insulin resistance that could be related to the cardiovascular alterations associated with this condition. Full article
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Open AccessArticle
Preconception Lifestyle and Cardiovascular Health in the Offspring of Overweight and Obese Women
Nutrients 2019, 11(10), 2446; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu11102446 - 14 Oct 2019
Cited by 1
Abstract
Women’s lifestyle has important implications for the development and health of their offspring. Yet little is known about the association between women’s preconception dietary intake and physical activity with cardiovascular health of the offspring. We therefore examined this association in a group of [...] Read more.
Women’s lifestyle has important implications for the development and health of their offspring. Yet little is known about the association between women’s preconception dietary intake and physical activity with cardiovascular health of the offspring. We therefore examined this association in a group of Dutch women with overweight or obesity (BMI ≥ 29 kg/m2) and infertility, who participated in a 6-month randomized preconception lifestyle intervention trial, and their offspring (n = 46). Preconception dietary intake and physical activity were assessed during the 6-month intervention using a food frequency questionnaire and the Short QUestionnaire to ASsess Health-enhancing physical activity (SQUASH), respectively. Offspring cardiovascular health (i.e., BMI, waist:height ratio, systolic and diastolic blood pressure, fat and fat free mass, and pulse wave velocity) was measured at age 3–6 years. Multivariable linear regression analyses were used to examine the associations between preconception lifestyle and offspring cardiovascular health. Higher preconception vegetable intake (per 10 g/day) was associated with lower offspring diastolic blood pressure (Z-score: −0.05 (−0.08; −0.01); p = 0.007) and higher preconception fruit intake (per 10 g/day) was associated with lower offspring pulse wave velocity (−0.05 m/s (−0.10; −0.01); p = 0.03). Against our expectations, higher preconception intake of sugary drinks was associated with a higher offspring fat free mass (0.54 kg (0.01; 1.07); p = 0.045). To conclude, preconception dietary intake is associated with offspring health. Full article
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Review

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Open AccessReview
Dietary Interventions for Healthy Pregnant Women: A Systematic Review of Tools to Promote a Healthy Antenatal Dietary Intake
Nutrients 2020, 12(7), 1981; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12071981 (registering DOI) - 03 Jul 2020
Abstract
Maternal nutrition is essential for the development and lifelong health of the offspring. Antenatal care provides unique opportunities for nutrition communication, and health promotion tools (e.g., guidelines, instruments, packages, or resources) might help to overcome several concurrent barriers. We conducted a systematic literature [...] Read more.
Maternal nutrition is essential for the development and lifelong health of the offspring. Antenatal care provides unique opportunities for nutrition communication, and health promotion tools (e.g., guidelines, instruments, packages, or resources) might help to overcome several concurrent barriers. We conducted a systematic literature review to map tools that are available for the promotion of a healthy dietary intake in healthy pregnant women in Western countries, and to identify what makes these tools feasible and effective for these women and their healthcare providers. Seventeen studies were included, evaluating tools with various delivery modes, content, and providers. Nine studies employed multiple, complementary delivery methods and almost all studies (n = 14) tailored the content to varying degrees, based on the individual characteristics and lifestyle behaviors of the participants. We found that the feasibility of a tool was dependent on practical issues, time investment, and providers’ motivation, skills, and knowledge, while the effectiveness was related more to the type of provider and the content. Most effective interventions were provided by dietitians and nutritionists, and were highly tailored. Based on the results of this review, we believe that custom tools that are sensitive to inequalities are needed to support all women in obtaining or maintaining a healthy diet during pregnancy. Full article
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Other

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Open AccessErratum
Erratum: Dietary Intervention in Pregnant Women with Gestational Diabetes; Protocol for the DiGest Randomised Controlled Trial; Nutrients 2020, 12, 1165
Nutrients 2020, 12(6), 1793; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu12061793 - 17 Jun 2020
Abstract
The authors would like to correct an error in a recent published paper [...] Full article
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