When a foetus is malnourished in the early and later stages of pregnancy it may also have a lifelong programming effect which predisposes the baby to chronic health conditions later in life. For example,
the foetus may adapt may adapt its metabolism to cope with malnutrition by reducing the amount of insulin and glucose produced. Such adaptation has been shown to permanently program the metabolic system and increase the risk of chronic health conditions later in life such as type 2 diabetes.
HEALTH RISK ASSOCIATED WITH MALNUTRITION DURING PREGNANCY
Health Risk for the Mother
Pregnant women who receive inadequate nutrition experience greater maternal morbidity (are more likely to be ill whilst pregnant) and have a higher risk for poor pregnancy outcomes (e.g. premature birth, miscarriage). They also have an increased risk of the following conditions: Anaemia, Infection, Lethargy and weakness, lower productivity. you can also see:
- HEALTH RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH MICRONUTRIENT DEFICIENCY BEFORE PREGNANCY
- MALNUTRITION: Health Risks for the Child in Long Term
- MALNUTRITION: HEALTH RISKS ASSOCIATED WITH MALNUTRITION SYMPTOMS.
- MALNUTRITION: SCOPE CAUSES OF MALNUTRITION
- Malnutrition: Malnutrition and its medical condition
Health Risk for the Foetus and Newborn Baby
Undernutrition in the pregnant woman is associated with a range of detrimental effects to the developing foetus, including intrauterine growth retardation (undergrowth) and low birth weight. Maternal undernutrition during pregnancy, IUGR and low birth weight are in turn associated with a range adverse outcomes for the developing foetus and the newborn baby, including an increased risk of the following;
perinatal mortality (death of the infant within seven days of birth) - infants who weigh less than 2.5kg are 5-30 times more likely to die within the first seven days of life compared to normal weight infants equal or greater than 2.5kg. Infants who weigh less than 1.5kg have a 70-100 times increased risk of dying within seven days of birth;
Infant neurological, intestinal, respiratory and circulatory disorders;
Under development of some organs;
Cretinism (a congenital condition affecting the thyroid gland which results in lack of coordination, dull facial expression and dry skin;