PRE-PREGNANCY BMI AND GESTATIONAL WEIGHT GAIN ARE ASSOCIATED WITH 6 MONTHS POSTPARTUM WEIGHT RETENTION
Background: Postpartum weight retention (PPWR) contributes to obesity in women of reproductive age. This study describes the pattern of 6 months postpartum weight retention of pregnant women and its associated factors.
Materials and Methods: A total of 83 pregnant women aged 20 to 44 were recruited from Maternal and Child Health Clinic (MCH) in Seremban, Negeri Sembilan. A set of pre-tested interview-administered questionnaire was used to collect socio-demographic, obstetrical information, dietary intake, physical activity, and postpartum depression. Rate of gestational weight gain (GWG) was calculated as average weekly weight gain in that trimester of pregnancy. Six months PPWR was calculated by subtracting the pre-pregnancy body weight from the 6 months postpartum weight.
Result: The mean total GWG was 11.69 ± 4.98kg, with 30.1% and 27.7% of women gained inadequate and excessive GWG. One-third (32.5%) of women had retained ≥ 4.55kg at 6 months postpartum, with a mean of 2.53 ± 4.01kg. Slightly less than half of women practiced exclusive breastfeeding (44.6%) and had high physical activity level (45.8%). About 90.4% of women had lower risk of postpartum depression. Maternal education (χ2= 5.52, p= 0.02), pre-pregnancy BMI (χ2= 4.75, p= 0.03) and higher GWG (r= 0.41, p= 0.001) were significantly associated with postpartum weight retention.
Conclusion: This study revealed that about 32.5% of women retained at least 4.55kg at 6 months postpartum. Pregnancy and postpartum period are critical times for weight change and a window of opportunity for interventions to reduce the risk of obesity.Keywords: Pre-pregnancy BMI, gestational weight gain, postpartum weight retention