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Am J Clin Nutr. 1987 Jan;45(1):29-41.

Benefits associated with WIC supplemental feeding during the interpregnancy interval.

Abstract

Interpregnancy WIC supplementation was evaluated by comparing maternal nutritional status indicators and subsequent birth outcomes of 703 WIC participants divided into two groups. Study group women received postpartum benefits for 5-7 mo while control group women received postpartum benefits for only 0-2 mo. Both groups received prenatal benefits during each of two study pregnancies. Infants born to study group women had a higher mean birthweight (131 g) and birthlength (0.3 cm) and a lower risk of being less than or equal to 2500 g. Additionally, at the onset of the second pregnancy study group women had higher mean hemoglobin levels and lower risk of maternal obesity. These results suggest that postpartum WIC supplementation has positive benefits for both the mother and her subsequent infants.

PIP:

Nutritional depletion is often found in women of high parity and short intervals between births. Food supplementation for the postpartum woman may be a desirable intervention. Interpregnancy WIC (special supplemental food program for women, infants and children) supplementation was evaluated by comparing maternal nutritional status indicators and subsequent birth outcomes of 703 California WIC participants divided into 2 groups. Study group women received postpartum benefits for 5-7 months white control group women received postpartum benefits for only 0-2 months. Both groups received prenatal benefits during each of 2 study pregnancies. Infants born to study group women had a higher mean birthweight and birthlength and a lower risk of being less than 2500 grams. Additionally, at the onset of the 2nd pregnancy study group women had higher mean hemoglobin levels and lower risk of maternal obesity. Since many women do not enter the WIC program until 3 ro 4 months following conception, they miss the opportunity to receive supplemental nutrients when the need is most critical. From the observations in this study, increases in birthweight are not operating through increased gestation. For underweight women these results are compatible with the belief of most nutritionists that supplementation will increase energy reserves which are beneficial for normal fetal growth. Extended feeding during the interpregnancy interval improves both infant and maternal nutritional status by enhancing birthweight and birthlength and altering the prepregnancy weight of women to a more optimal level. Women receiving extended postpartum benefits compared to those receiving limited benefits had a lowered risk o fdelivering infants of low birthweight and 1/2 the odds of maternal obesity at the onset of their subsequent pregnancy. The magnitude of birthweight effects demonstrated in this study emphasize the potentially important role of interpregnancy nutrition in human reproduction.

PMID:
3799501
DOI:
10.1093/ajcn/45.1.29
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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