16/07/2024

Care Health

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Focus on Pregnant and Postpartum Women

Focus on Pregnant and Postpartum Women

This week has been National Eating Disorders Awareness Week (February 27-March 5). Existing literature has explored the nature of eating disorders among perinatal women. It is well understood that the pregnancy and the postpartum period can be a challenging time for women who also experience body image dissatisfaction or who struggle with disordered eating. As Eating Disorders Awareness Week comes to a close, we wanted to share some of the blog posts that we’ve previously published in this space, in addition to linking resources for anyone who may be struggling or interested in learning more.

The National Eating Disorder Association (NEDA) is the largest nonprofit organization dedicated to supporting individuals and families affected by eating disorders. Its website provides information on eating disorders and has many resources:


From Our Website

Increased Risk of Neurodevelopmental Disorders in the Children of Women with Eating Disorders

Children of mothers with eating disorders, and in particular the children of mothers with a current diagnosis of anorexia nervosa during pregnancy, are at an increased risk of either ADHD or ASD.

Essential Reads: Obstetric and Perinatal Outcomes among Women with Eating Disorders

Greater attention to eating behaviors and screening eating disorders during pregnancy is the first step in improving outcomes in this population.

Exploring Some Complicated Issues: Body Image, Disordered Eating, and Weight in the Perinatal Period

Research has also identified an increased risk of disordered eating symptoms in the perinatal period even among women without an eating disorder diagnosis, yet gaps exist in our knowledge pertaining to the association between psychosocial risk factors and disordered eating in this population.

Eating Disorders and Their Impact on Pregnancy Outcomes

Eating disorders are relatively common among women of reproductive age, yet the literature on the effects of maternal eating disorders (ED) on pregnancy outcomes is relatively sparse. There has been concern that eating disorders may negatively affect gestational weight gain. Previous studies have demonstrated an association between maternal anorexia nervosa (AN) and lower infant birth weight.

References and Reviews

Management of anorexia nervosa in pregnancy: a systematic and state-of-the-art review.

Galbally M, Himmerich H, Senaratne S, Fitzgerald P, Frost J, Woods N, Dickinson JE. Lancet Psychiatry. 2022 May;9(5):402-412.

Prevalence and phenotype of eating disorders in assisted reproduction: a systematic review.

Le Floch M, Crohin A, Duverger P, Picard A, Legendre G, Riquin E. Reprod Health. 2022 Feb 7;19(1):38.

Systematic Review of Literature on Eating Disorders During Pregnancy-Risk and Consequences for Mother and Child.

Janas-Kozik M, ?mijowska A, Zasada I, Jelonek I, Cicho? L, Siwiec A, Wilczy?ski KM. Front Psychiatry. 2021 Dec 13;12:777529.

Outcomes for infants whose mothers had an eating disorder in the perinatal period: A systematic review of the evidence.

Mah B, Cibralic S, Hanna J, Hart M, Loughland C, Cosh S. Int J Eat Disord. 2021 Dec;54(12):2077-2094.

Eating disorders, pregnancy and the postnatal period: a review of the recent literature.

Bye A, Martini MG, Micali N. Curr Opin Psychiatry. 2021 Nov 1;34(6):563-568.

Disordered eating and eating disorders among women seeking fertility treatment: A systematic review.

Hecht LM, Hadwiger A, Patel S, Hecht BR, Loree A, Ahmedani BK, Miller-Matero LR. Arch Womens Ment Health. 2022 Feb;25(1):21-32.