Targeting the perinatal diet to modulate the gut microbiota increases dietary variety and prebiotic and probiotic food intakes: results from a randomised controlled trial
Dawson, Samantha L.
Craig, Jeffrey M.
Tang, Mimi L. K.
Jacka, Felice N.
Cambridge University Press on behalf of The Nutrition Society
Objective: To evaluate the hypothesis that a perinatal educational dietary intervention focused on ‘eating for the gut microbiota’ improves diet quality of pregnant women pre- and postnatally. Design: The Healthy Parents, Healthy Kids study is a prospectively registered randomised controlled trial designed to evaluate the efficacy of a dietary intervention in altering the maternal and infant gut microbiota and improving perinatal diet quality. Eligible pregnant women were randomised to receive dietary advice from their healthcare provider or to additionally receive a three session dietary intervention. Dietary data were collected at gestation weeks 26, 31, 36 and postnatal week 4. Outcome measures were diet quality, dietary variety, prebiotic and probiotic food intakes, energy, fibre, saturated fat and discretionary food intakes. Between-group differential changes from baseline before and after birth in these dietary measures were assessed using generalised estimating equations. Setting: Melbourne, Australia. Participants: Healthy pregnant women from gestation week 26. Results: Forty-five women were randomised (twenty-two control, twenty-three intervention). Compared with the control group, the intervention group improved diet quality prior to birth (5·66 (95 % CI 1·65, 9·67), Cohen’s d: 0·82 (SE 0·33)). The intervention improved dietary variety (1·05 (95 % CI 0·17, 1·94), d: 0·66 (SE 0·32)) and increased intakes of prebiotic (0·8 (95 % CI 0·27, 1·33), d: 0·91 (SE 0·33)) and probiotic foods (1·05 (95 % CI 0·57, 1·53), d: 1·3(SE 0·35)) over the whole study period compared with the control group. Conclusion: A dietary intervention focused on ‘eating for the gut microbiota’ can improve aspects of perinatal diet quality during and after pregnancy.
Pregnancy , Diet quality , Gut microbiota , Behaviour change intervention , Randomised controlled trial
Dawson, S. L., Mohebbi, M., Craig, J. M., Dawson, P., Clarke, G., Tang, M. L. K. and Jacka, F. N. (2021) 'Targeting the perinatal diet to modulate the gut microbiota increases dietary variety and prebiotic and probiotic food intakes: results from a randomised controlled trial', Public Health Nutrition, 24 5), pp. 1129-1141. doi: 10.1017/S1368980020003511
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