On The Agenda - Eat for one, not two, in pregnancy

Eat wise: Pregnancy tips
Eat wise: Pregnancy tips

In a nutshell

Researchers at the Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children/Children of the 90s at the University of Bristol have reiterated that expectant mothers do not need to 'eat for two'. They found that raising calorie intake significantly during pregnancy can increase the risk of long-term obesity and related health problems such as high blood pressure later in life.

Why is this important?

The principle of 'eating for two' in pregnancy was widely accepted. But the study adds to the notion that in the first six months, a woman does not need to exceed the normal recommended intake for non-pregnant women. In the final trimester, an extra 200 calories are needed to sustain a baby's growth.

The findings

The study looked at 3,877 women 16 years after they had given birth. It found that those who gained more than the recommended weight during pregnancy - about 18kg - were three times as likely to become overweight, obese or develop an apple-shaped figure.

PR strategy

The in-house PR team from the University of Bristol/Children of the 90s sent a press release to the national media and posted a copy on its own and the university's websites. Cision and EurkAlert! were used to distribute the release in the UK, Europe and the US.

Media coverage

The Daily Mail and The Daily Telegraph picked up the study, which was also covered by BBC Radio Bristol, BBC Three Counties Radio and on Medical News Today.

1,940 - Recommended daily calorie intake for a woman

15% - Percentage of pregnant women who are overweight

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