Weight gain of mother, birth weight of infant and maternal knowledge regarding nutrition in Sri Lanka
Birth weight of an infant is an indicator to a healthy future generation. This study was designed to find out the association between weight gain and level of knowledge about nutrition of pregnant mothers and the association between weight gain of mother to the birth weight of the child.
Healthy mothers (n=201) were selected from the antenatal wards of Colombo South Teaching Hospital, Sri Lanka. Those who fulfilled the inclusion criteria were given a self-administrated questionnaire and their weight at initial registration was noted and weight before delivery was measured. After delivery, birth weights of infants were taken.
Weight gain during the course of the pregnancy (mean 12.78 ±4.09 kg) had a significant association with birth weight of infants (Mean 2963.18 ±421.41 g). More than 70% of the study participants were found to have satisfactory or good knowledge on nutrition. Furthermore, majority of pregnant mothers avoid certain foods during pregnancy due to myths associated with pregnancy outcome and the food type. Thus further health education regarding nutrition should be conducted in antenatal clinics for the benefit of pregnant mothers.
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