Obstetricians and gynecologists are well positioned to influence population health through maternity and women's health services. Obesity is common in women of reproductive age and the prevalence is rising in both low-/middle-income and high-income countries 1. Obesity affects requirements for assessment, monitoring, and intervention and can impact maternal and child outcomes. Obstetricians and gynecologists require guidance on the care of women of reproductive age with obesity at all time points related to pregnancy, including how to address modifiable risk factors such as diet and physical activity. Many guidelines have been developed to date, although they vary in scope, methodology, and individual recommendations. FIGO's Committee Guideline for the Management of Prepregnancy, Pregnancy, and Postpartum Obesity (Table 1) reviews good clinical practice recommendations (Table 2-4) from previously published international documents. It serves as a practical resource to support obstetricians and gynecologists in the management of This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
With the increase in obesity prevalence among women of reproductive age globally, the risks of type 2 diabetes, gestational diabetes, pre‐eclampsia, and other conditions are rising, with detrimental effects on maternal and newborn health. The period before pregnancy is increasingly recognized as crucial for addressing weight management and reducing malnutrition (both under‐ and overnutrition) in both parents to reduce the risk of noncommunicable diseases (NCDs) in the mother as well as the passage of risk to her offspring. Healthcare practitioners, including obstetricians, gynecologists, midwives, and general practitioners, have an important role to play in supporting women in planning a pregnancy and achieving healthy nutrition and weight before pregnancy. In this position paper, the FIGO Pregnancy Obesity and Nutrition Initiative provides an overview of the evidence for preconception clinical guidelines to reduce the risk of NCDs in mothers and their offspring. It encourages healthcare practitioners to initiate a dialogue on women’s health, nutrition, and weight management before conception. While acknowledging the fundamental importance of the wider social and environmental determinants of health, this paper focuses on a simple set of recommendations for clinical practice that can be used even in short consultations. The recommendations can be contextualized based on local cultural and dietary practices as part of a system‐wide public health approach to influence the wider determinants as well as individual factors influencing preconception health.
Objective To gain insights from pregnant women and obstetricians on the utility of the FIGO Nutrition Checklist in antenatal practice. Methods Women were recruited from the antenatal department of a large tertiary‐level university maternity hospital in Dublin, Ireland, between October and December 2019. Participants completed the FIGO Nutrition Checklist before their routine antenatal appointment. Obstetricians and women were encouraged to discuss the FIGO Nutrition Checklist during the clinical visit. Completed FIGO Nutrition Checklists were collected after appointments. Acceptability was assessed through questionnaires. Results The majority (80.0%) of women answered “No” to at least one diet quality question, indicating a potential nutritional risk. While none of the participating obstetricians routinely discussed nutrition with women, all agreed that using the Checklist encouraged them to address nutrition with pregnant women. Nearly every woman (99.0%) found the Checklist quick to complete; however, all participating obstetricians felt there was not enough time to discuss it in routine practice. Despite this, most obstetricians and pregnant women recommended the FIGO Nutrition Checklist for use. Conclusion The FIGO Nutrition Checklist is acceptable for use in routine antenatal practice in tertiary care settings. It helped identify potentially at‐risk women during early pregnancy and facilitated conversations related to optimum diet.
Objective To gain an in‐depth understanding of how the FIGO Nutrition Checklist could work in clinical practice, from the perspective of pregnant women. Methods This qualitative study was part of a pilot study of the FIGO Nutrition Checklist in the antenatal department of a tertiary‐level university maternity hospital in Dublin, Ireland. Individual semistructured phone interviews were conducted with pregnant women who had completed the FIGO Nutrition Checklist as part of the pilot. Interviews were transcribed verbatim and analyzed using content analysis after manual coding of transcripts. Themes and subthemes are described. Results Ten interviews were completed. Subthemes related to the FIGO Nutrition Checklist emerged including ease of use and comprehension. Participants discussed how the tool could add value to their appointment by supporting initiation of nutrition conversations and highlighting nutritional issues. The first trimester was identified as the highest priority for using the FIGO Nutrition Checklist. The convenience of having nutrition addressed as part of standard care, rather than a separate appointment, also emerged. Conclusion Women in this study had a desire for nutrition and weight to be addressed by clinicians during routine antenatal appointments. The findings support using the FIGO Nutrition Checklist to address this.
The activities of the FIGO Pregnancy Obesity and Nutrition Initiative are aimed at reducing all types of malnutrition in women before, during and after pregnancy.
Background Child eating behaviours can negatively contribute to the development of childhood obesity. This study investigated associations between breastfeeding habits, maternal eating behaviours and child eating behaviours, in 5-year-old children. Methods Secundigravida women were recruited to the ROLO dietary randomised controlled trial (Dublin, Ireland) and were followed up with their children to 5 years of age. Breastfeeding exposure and duration were obtained at postnatal and infant follow-up at 2 and 6 months and 2 and 5 years. At 5 years, maternal and child eating behaviours were measured using the Three Factor Eating Questionnaire and the Child Eating Behaviour Questionnaire, respectively. Regression determined associations between breastfeeding habits and maternal eating behaviours with child eating behaviours, controlling for RCT group, maternal education level, maternal BMI at 5 years, childcare exposure and child BMI centile at 5-year follow-up. Results There were 230 mother and child pairs analysed. One hundred and fifty-eight mothers had initiated breastfeeding. Median breastfeeding duration was 22 (IQR 33) weeks. Children who were never breastfed were more likely to express a desire to drink (B = −1.01, p = 0.022). Longer breastfeeding duration was associated with lower food responsiveness (B = −1.71, p = 0.003). Maternal uncontrolled eating was positively associated with child food responsiveness, emotional overeating and emotional undereating (B = 0.21, p < 0.001; B = 0.14, p = 0.005; B = 0.14, p = 0.005, respectively). Maternal emotional eating was associated with child emotional overeating and undereating (B = 0.27, p < 0.001, B = 0.29, p = 0.004, respectively). Conclusion Not breastfeeding and short breastfeeding duration may contribute to the development of obesogenic eating behaviours in children, alongside maternal eating behaviours including uncontrolled and emotional eating. These ‘food approach’ eating behaviours may increase risk of overweight/obesity as they are associated with increased energy intake, hence the importance of research surrounding eating behaviours.
The FIGO PONI Supplement highlights the importance of weight and nutrition for women before, during, and after pregnancy, and provides recommendations and tools for clinical practice.
Objective:To explore the knowledge of Developmental Origins of Health and Disease (DOHaD) concepts among midwives and obstetricians and to identify barriers and facilitators for clinicians to engage women and their partners before or early in pregnancy on risk factors associated with DOHaD, and thus to embed the concept of DOHaD in routine clinical practice. Methods:A qualitative study using semi-structured interviews will be conducted in Ghana, India, Pakistan, Brazil, the UK, and USA in collaboration with the International Confederation of Midwives and the International Federation of Obstetricians andGynecologists. Participants will be contacted via email and telephone interviews will be conducted until data saturation followed by inductive thematic analysis. Results: Findings from this exploratory study will provide new knowledge about the perspectives of midwives and obstetricians on DOHaD and their role in preventing the intergenerational passage of non-communicable disease (NCD) risk and improving preconception care.Conclusion: This study will help us understand the current use of DOHaD principles in international maternity care and how this can be improved. Bringing DOHaD to clinical practice will help healthcare practitioners adopt a long-term approach in the prevention of NCDs and childhood obesity and will help women to enter pregnancy in optimum health. K E Y W O R D S
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