Effects of a preconception lifestyle intervention in obese infertile women on diet and physical activity; A secondary analysis of a randomized controlled trial

Tessa M. Van Elteni, Matty D.A. Karsten, Anouk Geelen, Anne M. Van Oers, Mireille N.M. Van Poppel, Henk Groen, Reinoud J.B.J. Gemke, Ben Willem Mol, Meike A.Q. Mutsaerts, Tessa J. Roseboom, Annemieke Hoek

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Background Lifestyle changes are notoriously difficult. Since women who intend to become pregnant are more susceptible to lifestyle advice, interventions during this time window might be more effective than interventions during any other period in life. We here report the effects of the first large preconception lifestyle intervention RCT on diet and physical activity in obese infertile women. Methods In total, 577 women were randomized between a six-month lifestyle intervention program (intervention group; N = 290) or prompt infertility treatment (control group; N = 287). Self-reported dietary behaviors and physical activity were assessed at baseline, three, six and twelve months after randomization. Mixed models were used to analyze differences between groups. Results Compared to the control group, the intervention group reduced their intake of sugary drinks at three months (-0.5 glasses/day [95% C.I. = -0.9;-0.2]), of savory snacks at three (-2.4 handful/week [-3.4;-1.4]) and at six months (-1.4 handful/week [-2.6;-0.2]), and of sweet snacks at three (-2.2 portion/week [-3.3;-1.0]) and twelve months after randomization (-1.9 portion/week [-3.5;-0.4]). Also, the intervention group was more moderate to vigorous physically active at three months after randomization compared to the control group (169.0 minutes/ week [6.0; 332.1]). Conclusion Our study showed that obese infertile women who followed a six-month preconception lifestyle intervention program decreased their intake of high caloric snacks and beverages, and increased their physical activity. These changes in lifestyle may not only improve women's health but their offspring's health too.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbere0206888
Number of pages15
JournalPLoS ONE
Issue number11
Publication statusPublished - 1 Nov 2018

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