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According to a recent study, women who gain excessive weight during the early stages of pregnancy may be at an increased risk of developing gestational diabetes.
The three-year study, which was conducted by researchers from the Kaiser Permanente Medical Group, found that women who gained more weight during pregnancy than recommended by the U.S. Institute of Medicine were 50 percent more likely to develop gestational diabetes.
The strongest link between diabetes risk and weight gain was seen in non-white women who added excessive weight during the first trimester.
"Health-care providers should talk to their patients early in their pregnancy about the appropriate gestational weight gain, especially during the first trimester, and help women monitor their weight gain," said lead author Monique Hedderson.
"Our research shows that weight gain in early pregnancy is a modifiable risk factor for gestational diabetes," she added.
Gestational diabetes, which affects as many a 7 percent of pregnant women, is associated with an increased risk of prenatal complications and can increase the child's chances of developing diabetes and obesity later in life.
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