Preconception nutrition, physical activity, and birth outcomes in adolescent girls


Xie, Yiqiong; Madkour, Aubrey Spriggs; & Harville, Emily Wheeler (2015). Preconception nutrition, physical activity, and birth outcomes in adolescent girls. Journal of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology.


AbstractBackground Recommendations for preconception care usually include optimal nutrition and physical activity, but these have not been tested extensively for their relationship with birth outcomes such as low birthweight and preterm birth. Methods Data from Waves I, II and IV of the National Longitudinal Study of Adolescent Health (Add Health) contractual dataset were utilized. In Wave I in-home interview, participants were asked to recall their frequency of having five types of food on the previous day, including milk, fruit, vegetables, grains, and sweets. At Wave II, participants reported the previous day’s intake of 55 items, and results were categorized into high-calorie sweet, high-calorie non-sweet, and low-calorie food. At Wave I in-home interview, participants were also asked how many times in a week or during the past week they were involved in types of physical activity. At Wave IV, female participants reported pregnancies and birth outcomes. Multivariable linear regression analysis with survey weighting was used to predict birthweight and gestational age. Results There were no associations between reported food intake and birth outcomes. Girls who engaged in more episodes of active behavior had higher birthweights (p<0.01), but hours of sedentary behavior was not associated with birthweight. Multivariable analysis also indicated a u-shaped association between BMI and birthweight (p for quadratic term=0.01). Conclusion Adolescents who are more physically active prior to pregnancy have more positive birth outcomes as represented by birthweight.




Reference Type

Journal Article

Journal Title

Journal of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology


Xie, Yiqiong
Madkour, Aubrey Spriggs
Harville, Emily Wheeler

Year Published






Reference ID