A team of experts at Linköping University constructed a mobile app capable of aiding women in leading a healthier lifestyle during pregnancy.
The findings were made available in the journal JMIR Mhealth and Uhealth.
“Excessive gestational weight gain (GWG) during pregnancy is a major public health concern associated with negative health outcomes for both mother and child,” the study reads.
“Most previous studies of digital interventions have been small pilot studies or have not included women from all BMI categories. We therefore examined the effectiveness of a smartphone app in a large sample covering all BMI categories.”
For the study, 305 women were recruited from maternity clinics in Östergötland, Sweden.
“Eligible women who provided written informed consent completed baseline measures, before being randomized in a 1:1 ratio to either an intervention or control group,” according to the study’s authors.
“The control group received standard maternity care while the intervention group received the HealthyMoms smartphone app for 6 months (which includes multiple features, eg, information; push notifications; self-monitoring; and feedback features for GWG, diet, and physical activity) in addition to standard care.”
The study concluded that the smartphone application may be beneficial in promoting healthier dietary patterns, while also reducing weight gain during the stages of pregnancy.
“Although we found no overall effect on GWG, our results demonstrate the potential of a smartphone app (HealthyMoms) to promote healthy dietary behaviors as well as to decrease weight gain during pregnancy in women with overweight and obesity,” the study determined.