Nutrition status during adolescent pregnancy and childbearing is a complex, multifaceted condition that can impact the health status of the teen mother and her baby. Adolescent mothers are at higher risk for low birth weight infants because of the unique dietary requirements needed to accommodate for both the growth needs of the adolescent mother and her unborn child. The purpose of this research was to examine dietary interventions that have the greatest effect on fetal birth weight outcomes in adolescent mothers. Secondly, this study explored dietary nutrients effective in reducing the likelihood of complications commonly associated with low birth weight infants in adolescent pregnancy. A systematic literature review was conducted from the following online databases: Cumulative Index to Nursing and Allied Health Literature (CINAHL), Medical Literature On-line (MEDLINE), Education Resources Information Center (ERIC), and PsycInfo. Initial search terms included 'adolescent', 'nutrition', 'diet', and 'prenatal'. Further search items included 'weight' and 'outcome'. Selected articles included those published between 2000-2013, written in English, and peer-reviewed. Significant evidence supported positive birth weight outcomes for dietary supplementation with zinc and calcium, and BMI-specific weight gains for adolescent pregnancy. No significant evidence was provided on the effect of iron and fatty acid composition on birth weight outcomes. Results for other dietary interventions and their effects on fetal birth weight were either inconclusive or absent. Discovering dietary interventions that work best in prenatal care of adolescent populations will allow for more individually-tailored, dietary specific interventions to be developed to combat the prevalence of low fetal birth weight infants in adolescent pregnancy.
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Bachelor of Science in Nursing (B.S.N.)
College of Nursing
Dissertations, Academic -- Nursing; Nursing -- Dissertations, Academic
UCF Daytona Beach
Length of Campus-only Access
Honors in the Major Thesis
Nath, Seeta, "The Effect of Dietary Interventions on Fetal Birth Weights in Pregnant Adolescents: A Systematic Review" (2014). HIM 1990-2015. 1645.