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Maternal dietary patterns, diet quality and micronutrient status in gestational diabetes mellitus across different economies: A review

Division of Nutrition and Dietetics, School of Health Sciences, International Medical University, 57000, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia

Special Issues: Nutrition and Diet in Gestational Diabetes Mellitus

Gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM) is one of the most common metabolic disorders known to develop during pregnancy. Besides obesity and sedentary lifestyles being the main predisposing factors, dietary measures play an important role in its progression too. Hence, managing GDM has become a great challenge for healthcare professionals globally. It is pertinent to establish and manage the predisposing factors for GDM. Many studies have investigated the potential dietary risk factors linked to GDM, especially dietary patterns and diet quality. While certain healthful dietary patterns incorporating wholegrain cereals, high in fruits and vegetables, low meat and saturated fats have been protective against GDM, deficiencies of micronutrients such as potassium, magnesium, and possibly zinc and chromium may predispose one to carbohydrate intolerance. The alterations in iron and zinc body stores could also affect GDM. Dietary iron, vitamin C and D are amongst the micronutrients associated with the development and prevention of diabetes in pregnant women. However, evidences on the effects of vitamins, minerals other indices of maternal diet quality on GDM are inconclusive. This review provides an overview of the emerging evidences on the role of maternal dietary patterns, diet quality and micronutrients, which may contribute in the prevention of GDM across the different economies in the world. The results will empower the healthcare professionals to prevent and manage GDM effectively.
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