Food insecurity with past experience of restrained eating is a recipe for increased gestational weight gain

Appetite. 2013 Jun;65:178-84. doi: 10.1016/j.appet.2013.01.018. Epub 2013 Feb 10.


Food insecurity is linked to higher weight gain in pregnancy, as is dietary restraint. We hypothesized that pregnant women exposed to marginal food insecurity, and who reported dietary restraint before pregnancy, will paradoxically show the greatest weight gain. Weight outcomes were defined as total kilograms, observed-to-recommended weight gain ratio, and categorized as adequate, inadequate or excessive weight gain based on 2009 Institute of Medicine guidelines. A likelihood ratio test assessed the interaction between marginal food insecurity and dietary restraint and found significant. Adjusted multivariate regression and multinomial logistic models were used to estimate weight gain outcomes. In adjusted models stratified by dietary restraint, marginal insecurity and low restraint was significantly associated with lower weight gain and weight gain ratio compared to food secure and low restraint. Conversely, marginal insecurity and high restraint was significantly associated with higher weight gain and weight gain ratio compared to food secure and high restraint. Marginal insecurity with high restraint was significantly associated with excessive weight gain. Models were consistent when restricted to low-income women and full-term deliveries. In the presence of marginal food insecurity, women who struggle with weight and dieting issues may be at risk for excessive weight gain.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Diet, Reducing*
  • Energy Intake*
  • Feeding Behavior*
  • Female
  • Food Supply*
  • Humans
  • Hunger
  • Income
  • Logistic Models
  • Multivariate Analysis
  • Obesity / complications
  • Obesity / etiology*
  • Poverty
  • Pregnancy
  • Pregnancy Complications*
  • Weight Gain*
  • Young Adult