Writing in the journal Nutrients, researchers said they sought to examine the cross-sectional relationship between maternal dietary patterns during pregnancy and the risk of gestational diabetes in a multi-ethnic Asian cohort.
Maternal diet was recorded using dietary recalls from participants in the Growing up in Singapore towards healthy outcomes (GUSTO) study—a prospective mother-offspring cohort.
“Dietary patterns were identified using factor analysis, and multivariate regression analyses performed to assess the association with gestational diabetes,” they wrote, adding “of 909 participants, 17.6% were diagnosed with the illness.”
Three dietary patterns were identified: a vegetable-fruit-rice-based-diet, a seafood-noodle-based-diet and a pasta-cheese-processed-meat-diet.
The vegetable-fruit-rice diet was high in vegetables, fruit, white rice, bread, low-fat meat and fish, and low in fried potatoes, burgers, carbonated and sugar sweetened beverages.
The seafood-noodle diet was high in soup, fish and seafood products, noodles (flavoured and/or in soup), low-fat meat, and seafood, and low in ethnic bread, legumes and pulses, white rice, and curry-based gravies.
The pasta-cheese-processed-meat-diet was high in pasta, cheese, processed meats, tomato-based and cream-based sauces.
Whereas previous studies have associated people on a vegetable-fruit-rice diet has having a lower risk of gestational diabetes, in this study it was those on the seafood-noodle diet.
High protein intake
“We found a significant association between the reported consumption of a seafood-noodle bases diet during pregnancy, and a lower risk of gestational diabetes,” wrote the researchers.
They pointed out that participants in the highest quintile of seafood-noodle based diet consumption had a higher intake of protein and fat, and a lower intake of carbohydrates in comparison to those in the lowest quintile
“Our study is the first to report findings on the association between maternal dietary patterns and risk of gestational diabetes in a multi-ethnic Asian setting.
“No studies in the Western population identified rice or noodles in their dietary patterns—two main carbohydrate staples in the Singaporean diet. This may explain the difference between findings in the dietary pattern investigations in Western populations compared to our multi-ethnic Asian cohort,” they added.
With Asian women being at an increased risk of gestational diabetets, the researchers state further research should be conducted in Asian populations to better understand the role of maternal diet in its development and progression.
“This research domain would benefit from studies that can elucidate the metabolic mechanisms linking the protective association of the seafood-noodle-based-diet consumption with gestational diabetes,” it added.
“Maternal Dietary Patterns and Gestational Diabetes Mellitus in a Multi-Ethnic Asian Cohort: The GUSTO Study”
Author: Jamie de Seymour, et al