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Obes Rev. 2011 Oct;12(10):770-80. doi: 10.1111/j.1467-789X.2011.00886.x. Epub 2011 May 6.

Post-partum weight retention in women in Asia: a systematic review.

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Department of Nursing, Chung Hwa University of Medical Technology, Tainan, Taiwan.


Obesity is a health issue for people in Asia, and many studies support that childbearing may contribute to women's obesity. However, most studies of post-partum weight retention (PWR) focus on Western countries. This paper aimed to review recent data on PWR and discuss the related factors of PWR for women in Asia. Three electronic databases - MEDLINE, CINAHL and PsycINFO - were searched for data from January 1990 to August 2010. Twelve studies were identified as containing information related to PWR. Chinese, Taiwanese and Korean women tend to have higher gestational weight gain and PWR than women in other Asian countries in this review. The average reported gestational weight gain in these studies ranged from 8.3 kg to 18.0 kg, and the average weight retention at 6 months post partum in various countries ranged from 1.56 kg to 4.1 kg. Gestational weight gain had a positive effect on PWR, but there were no consistent conclusions for other factors. Only a few psychosocial and behavioural factors have been studied. Moreover, no one has assessed changes in waist circumference and waist-to-hip ratio for measuring central obesity and ensuring risk of chronic disease. Focusing on changes in maternal weight and body composition, and considering the impact of psychological and behavioural factors are suggested for future studies in Asia.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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