Send to

Choose Destination
See comment in PubMed Commons below
J Acad Nutr Diet. 2012 Oct;112(10):1619-25. doi: 10.1016/j.jand.2012.07.002.

Stress, depression, social support, and eating habits reduce diet quality in the first trimester in low-income women: a pilot study.

Author information

University of Texas at Austin, School of Nursing, Austin, USA.


Maternal diet quality influences birth outcomes. Yet, little research exists that assesses women's diet quality during the first trimester of pregnancy, a crucial time of placental and fetal development. This cross-sectional study, describing diet quality and its relationship with stress, depression, social support, and eating habits in the first trimester, may identify low-income women needing intensive dietary intervention. Seventy-one low-income women completed validated instruments measuring stress, depression, social support, and eating habits; had their height and weight measured; received training on portion-size estimation; and completed three 24-hour dietary recalls (1 weekend day and 2 nonconsecutive weekdays) from July 2009 to February 2010. Comparative and correlational analyses were done. Women with diet quality scores below the median (n=35) had more depression (9.6±5.1 vs 6.7±5.1) and stress (22.1±5.4 vs 19.3±4.8) and less control over meal preparation (5.0±1.5 vs 4.2±1.5) and support from others (52.0±12.0 vs 57.4±7.2) than did women with high diet quality scores (n=36). Diet quality was negatively related to depression (r=-0.41), stress (r=-0.35), skipping meals (r=-0.41), and control over meal preparation (r=-0.33), and positively related to support from others (r=0.38). Low-income women experiencing life stressors represent an at-risk group for low diet quality and may need intensive dietary intervention before and during pregnancy. More research designed to improve diet quality in low-income pregnant women is needed.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article
PubMed Commons home

PubMed Commons

How to join PubMed Commons

    Supplemental Content

    Full text links

    Icon for Elsevier Science Icon for PubMed Central
    Loading ...
    Support Center