A community lifestyle programme

Improving the well-being of pregnant women with a BMI of 30 or over.

Couple cycling along roadWomen who are obese during their pregnancies are at increased risk of suffering from gestational diabetes, pre-eclampsia, miscarriage and stillbirth. Research also shows that the children of these women are at greater risk of obesity from childhood through to adulthood.

It is estimated that 22 percent of women are currently obese at the start of their pregnancies.

Tommy's received statutory grant funding to pilot a tailored lifestyle programme for obese pregnant women to improve weight management and pregnancy outcomes of this group. We are recruiting women following recommendations from GPs and midwives after their first booking appointment. A programme manager (Health Psychologist) and supporting midwives have been employed to recruit women on a referral basis from two Manchester referral sites: Oldham and Bolton. They see women on a group basis in local communities at their local children’s centres over a period of 10 weeks.

The programme is provided as supplementary to their standard antenatal care and does not replace it. The programme is focusing on the promising combination of health psychology with a diet and exercise intervention. The contents of the programme are evidence based with input from a range of experts who form our Advisory Group.

Our health psychologist and programme manager is Dr Debbie Smith of the University of Manchester, School of Nursing, Midwifery & Social Work. Together with Professor of Midwifery Tina Lavender, she is having great success with co-ordinating the study in Oldham and Bolton and is on track to recruit our target of 200 women.

The study is due to finish in July 2012 and we will keep you updated on our progress.

Further information

For further information about this campaign please email: healthcampaigns@tommys.org

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