Diet, Stress Programs Might Cut SGA Risk in High-Risk Pregnancy

Risk for small-for-gestational-age newborn lower in high-risk pregnant women receiving Mediterranean diet or stress reduction intervention



TUESDAY, Dec. 7, 2021 (HealthDay News) — The odds of giving birth to a newborn that is small for gestational age (SGA) are reduced among pregnant women at high risk who receive a structured Mediterranean diet or mindfulness-based stress reduction intervention compared with usual care, according to a study published in the Dec. 7 issue the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Francesca Crovetto, MD, Ph.D., from the University of Barcelona in Spain, and colleagues conducted a parallel group randomized trial involving 1,221 individuals with singleton pregnancies at high risk for SGA. Participants were randomly assigned to a Mediterranean diet group, which received two hours monthly of educational sessions and free provision of extra-virgin olive oil and walnuts; a stress-reduction group, which involved an eight-week program consisting of weekly 2.5-hour sessions and one full-day session; and usual care (407 in each group); 392, 391, and 401 participants, respectively, completed the trial.

The researchers found that SGA occurred in 21.9, 14.0, and 15.6 percent, respectively, in the control group, the Mediterranean diet group (odds ratio, 0.58; risk difference, −7.9), and the stress reduction group (odds ratio, 0.66; risk difference, −6.3). The composite adverse perinatal outcome occurred in 26.2, 18.6, and 19.5 percent, respectively, in the control group, Mediterranean group (odds ratio, 0.64; risk difference, −7.6), and stress reduction group (odds ratio, 0.68; risk difference, −6.8).

“Due to important study limitations, these findings should be considered preliminary and require replication, as well as assessment in additional patient populations, before concluding that these treatments should be recommended to patients,” the authors write.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the biopharmaceutical industry; two authors received book royalties.

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