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To evaluate the associations of pregestational BMI, gestational weight gain (GWG) and breast-feeding at 1 month postpartum with four patterns of weight change during the first year after delivery: postpartum weight retention (PPWR), postpartum weight gain (PPWG), postpartum weight retention + gain (PPWR + WG) and return to pregestational weight.
In this secondary analysis of a prospective study, we categorised postpartum weight change into four patterns using pregestational weight and weights at 1, 6 and 12 months postpartum. We evaluated their associations with pregestational BMI, GWG and breast-feeding using multinomial logistic regression. Results are presented as relative risk ratios (RRR) and 95 % CI.
Women participating in the Programming Research in Obesity, Growth, Environment and Social Stressors pregnancy cohort.
Five hundred women were included (53 % of the cohort). Most women returned to their pregestational weight by 1 year postpartum (57 %); 8 % experienced PPWR, 14 % PPWG and 21 % PPWR + WG. Compared with normal weight, pregestational overweight (RRR 2·5, 95 % CI 1·3, 4·8) and obesity (RRR 2·2, 95 % CI 1·0, 4·7) were associated with a higher risk of PPWG. Exclusive breast-feeding, compared with no breast-feeding, was associated with a lower risk of PPWR (RRR 0·3, 95 % CI 0·1, 0·9). Excessive GWG, compared with adequate, was associated with a higher risk of PPWR (RRR 3·3, 95 % CI 1·6, 6·9) and PPWR + WG (RRR 2·4, 95 % CI 1·4, 4·2).
Targeting women with pregestational overweight or obesity and excessive GWG, as well as promoting breast-feeding, may impact the pattern of weight change after delivery and long-term women’s health.
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