Pregnancy Exercise Program Prompts Modest Activity Increase

Intervention for obese women found feasible but may not be enough to prevent gestational DM
By Beth Gilbert
HealthDay Reporter

FRIDAY, July 9 (HealthDay News) -- An individualized exercise program for obese pregnant women with an energy expenditure goal of 900 kcal/week is feasible and can lead to modest increases in physical activity, though it may not be enough to prevent gestational diabetes mellitus, according to a study in the July issue of Diabetes Care.

Leonie K. Callaway, Ph.D., of the Royal Brisbane and Women's Hospital in Australia, and colleagues randomized obese pregnant women to an individualized exercise program with an energy expenditure goal of 900 kcal/week, or usual care.

The researchers found that 16 of the 22 women (73 percent) who underwent the individualized exercise program achieved more than 900 kcal/week of exercise-based activity at 28 weeks, though only eight of 19 women (42 percent) who underwent usual care did. However, insulin resistance did not differ between those who underwent the individualized exercise program and those who underwent usual care.

"While this intervention was feasible and prompted a modest increase in physical activity, there is no evidence to suggest that it would be sufficient to prevent gestational diabetes mellitus," the authors conclude.

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