American women with a history of gestational diabetes mellitus have lower-quality diets compared with mothers who do not have a history of the disease, according to a University of Massachusetts Medical School study.
Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) during a previous pregnancy was reported by 7.7 percent of U.S. women who reported data as part of the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey for 2007 through 2010. Women with a history of GDM were, on average, 2.5 years older than women without a history of the disease. Women who had a history of GDM were less likely to be of non-Hispanic white race/ethnicity and were more likely to be obese, to report a diagnosis of prediabetes, and to report health risks for diabetes.
For all women surveyed, the overall average diet quality score was 49.3 out of 100. Average diet quality score was 46.4 among women with a history of GDM and 49.5 among women without a history of GDM. After adjustments for age, education, smoking status, and diabetes risk, women with a history of GDM had, on average, 3.4 points lower total diet quality compared with women without a history of GDM. The only component diet quality score that differed by history of GDM was the consumption of greens and beans. Researchers found that women with a history of GDM had average scores 0.9 points lower for consumption of these foods than women without a history of GDM.
"Childbearing women in the United States have, on average, poor diet quality. Women with a history of GDM have a significantly lower overall diet quality and reported lower consumption of greens and beans than women without a history of GDM," the study authors note.