The study, led by King’s College London and supported by the British Heart Foundation and Tommy’s charity, examined how an antenatal diet and physical activity intervention in pregnant women with obesity could positively influence the health of the women and their children three years after giving birth.
The study analyzed health of mothers and their children three years after birth for two groups – one that was provided diet and exercise intervention and another with no specific changes. Both groups that mothers that were obese at the time of pregnancy.
Follow-up examinations three years after birth showed that the children born to the intervention arm of the trial had a lower resting heart rate of -5 bpm than children treated with standard care. A higher resting heart rate in adults is associated with hypertension and cardiovascular dysfunction.
The study also showed that mothers in the intervention arm maintained a healthier diet three years after birth.
These findings open an opportunity for obese mothers to promote positive health in their children and improve overall well being of family with diet and lifestyle changes postpartum.