A new study has found that lifestyle interventions in diet and exercise during pregnancy protect the risk of cardiovascular disease in infants.
The study recently published in International Journal of Obesity By researchers from King’s College London, they found that 3-year-olds were more likely to display risk factors for heart disease in the future if their mother had clinical obesity during Pregnancy. A behavioral lifestyle intervention reduced this risk.
In the UK, more than half of women who attend antenatal care are clinically overweight or obese. There is mounting evidence to suggest that obesity during pregnancy is associated with impaired cardiovascular function in children, and that serious cardiovascular disease may start in the womb.
The UPBEAT trial was conducted at Guy’s and St Thomas’ NHS Foundation Trust, in which women with obesity (body mass index greater than 30 kg/m) were randomly selected.2) in early pregnancy to diet, exercise or standard pregnancy care.
The intervention included individual counseling, and restriction food intake of saturated fats, eating foods with a low glycemic index such as vegetables and legumes, moderate and controlled Physical activity And tools for recording exercise. The intervention arm saw improvements in overweight In pregnancy, physical activity, a healthy diet, and a healthy metabolic profile during pregnancy.
Follow-up of children at age three showed that children of women with clinical obesity had evidence of cardiac remodeling, a risk factor for future cardiovascular disease.
Changes included thickening of the heart muscle, and a higher level of comfort heart rateEvidence for early impairment of cardiac relaxation function and increased sympathetic nerve activity (the ‘fight or flight’ response) compared to women of normal weight. Children of women assigned to the intervention arm were protected from these early changes in heart structure and function.
Study leader Dr Paul Taylor, from King’s College London, says, “Maternal obesity appears to negatively affect fetal nervous system development and fetal heart development that appears until age 3 years. A complex lifestyle. judicial intervention During pregnancy it was associated with protection against cardiac remodeling in infants. We can assume that these changes in the heart and its function will worsen over time, putting the child at increased risk of developing cardiovascular disease in the future.”
The study suggests that maternal obesity may have a lasting impact on a child’s cardiovascular health. Promoting dietary changes and physical activity during pregnancy may reduce this risk.
Paul D. Taylor et al, Lifestyle intervention in obese pregnancy and cardiac remodeling in 3-year-olds: UPBEAT RCT children, International Journal of Obesity (2022). DOI: 10.1038 / s41366-022-01210-3
King’s College London
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