Preg-MEDAS questionnaire: questions for a healthier pregnancy

A study conducted by IRSJD and IDIBAPS introduces the new preg-MEDAS questionnaire, which measures the positive impact of the Mediterranean diet on pregnant women. The study demonstrated that women following the Mediterranean diet significantly reduced their blood pressure.

The preg-MEDAS is a new 17-question survey about the Mediterranean diet, designed to help improve health during pregnancy, and can be used both in healthcare settings and research.

This questionnaire has been validated through a study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The research was coordinated by Dr. Francesca Crovetto from the Fetal and Perinatal Medicine group (IRSJD · BCNatal - SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital and Hospital Clínic), Dr. Sara Castro-Barquero (BCNatal - SJD Barcelona Children's Hospital and Hospital Clínic), Dr. Rosa Casas, and Dr. Fátima Crispi, researchers from the Cardiovascular Risk, Nutrition, and Aging Research Group and the Fetal and Perinatal Medicine group (BCNatal) at IDIBAPS.

The evaluation took place within the IMPACT BCN trial and included 812 pregnant women at high risk of having babies with low gestational weight. Participants were assigned to three groups: intervention with the Mediterranean diet, a stress reduction program based on mindfulness, or standard care.

The Mediterranean Diet: A Great Ally

The results showed that women following a Mediterranean diet had better cardiometabolic health and a significant reduction in blood pressure after three months of intervention. Moreover, this questionnaire adapts the Mediterranean diet to the nutritional requirements of the pregnancy stage.

It promotes the intake of traditional healthy foods such as vegetables, fruits, legumes, whole grains, oily fish, nuts, extra virgin olive oil, and dairy products. At the same time, it encourages a reduction in the consumption of refined grains, red and processed meats, sugary drinks, margarine or butter, and sweets. This approach reduces a significant perinatal complication: having neonates small for gestational age.

This study has validated the preg-MEDAS questionnaire as a new healthcare tool, based on scientific evidence, that can be useful for measuring and improving diet during pregnancy through the Mediterranean diet. It highlights the importance of healthy eating during pregnancy for the well-being of mothers and babies, although further research is needed to understand the long-term effects on the health of the children.

The project received funding from the Fundació La Caixa, the Cerebra Foundation for the Brain Injured Child, the Agency for Management of University and Research Grants (AGAUR), the Instituto de Salud Carlos III, the University of Barcelona, and the Biomedical Research Networking Center on Rare Diseases (CIBERER), Obesity and Nutrition (CIBEROBN), and Mental Health (CIBERSAM).

Reference article

Castro-Barquero S, Crovetto F, Estruch R, Ruiz-León AM, Larroya M, Sacanella E, Casanovas-Garriga F, Casas I, Nakaki A, Youssef L, Trejo-Domínguez A, Benitez L, Genero M, Vieta E, Gratacós E, Crispi F, Casas R. Validation of a pregnancy-adapted Mediterranean Diet Adherence Screener (preg-MEDAS): a validation study nested in the Improving Mothers for a better PrenAtal Care Trial BarCeloNa (IMPACT BCN) trial. Am J Clin Nutr. 2024 Jun 1(24)00519-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ajcnut.2024.05.025. Epub ahead of print. PMID: 38830408.

Information source

17 preguntes sobre dieta mediterrània per a un embaràs més saludable: el qüestionari preg-MEDAS. Hospital Clínic - IDIBAPS.

The study confirms the validity of this new tool, the preg-MEDAS questionnaire, which allows for a quick and easy assessment of adherence to the Mediterranean diet in pregnant women.