Myth: The diet of a pregnant mother has no health consequences on their expecting child.
Truth: This is false.
According to a study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, pregnant mothers with gestational diabetes that consumed a large number of refined carbohydrates increased the likelihood of their child getting obese seven years postpartum.
This study examined the mother’s dietary regimen while pregnant and also recorded the infant’s birth weight and height to determine if, after seven years, there was a positive association with the child becoming overweight.
The study found that expecting mothers that consumed 4.3 or more servings of refined carbohydrates per day had children that were 1.8 times more likely to report being overweight and obese. Researchers also found that mothers wishing to reverse this trend could substitute one serving of refined carbohydrates with whole grains, like brown rice, quinoa, or oats which could possibly mitigate the negative consequences of childhood obesity by 10%.
To read more about how refined carbohydrates can negatively affect a child’s health, click here.
- Zhu Y, Olsen SF, Mendola P, et al. Maternal dietary intakes of refined grains during pregnancy and growth through the first 7 y of life among children born to women with gestational diabetes. Am J Clin Nutr. 2017;106(1):96-104. doi:10.3945/ajcn.116.136291