LIFT (Lifestyle Intervention for Two) trial found that intervening in women with overweight and obesity through behaviors promoting healthy diet and physical activity to control gestational weight gain (GWG) resulted in neonates with similar fat and greater lean mass at birth. Whether these neonate measureable effects are sustained though 1-year was the focus of this investigation.
Neonatal body composition was assessed by Infant QMR at birth (n=169), 14 weeks (n=136) and 59 weeks (n=139). Between group (Lifestyle Intervention, LI and Usual Care, UC) differences in fat and lean mass were investigated using ANCOVA adjusting for maternal age and BMI in early pregnancy, GWG, offspring sex, ethnicity, and age.
Retention at 59 wks was 82.2% (N=139). At birth, compared to UC, LI had greater weight (131±59g p=0.03), head circumference (0.38±0.17mm; p=0.003), and lean mass (105±38g; p=0.006). At 14 wks, compared to UC, LI infants had similar weight (112±131 g p=0.395), fat mass (14±80 g; p=0.86), lean mass (100±63g; p=0.117), and at 59 wks, had similar weight (168±183 g p=0.36), fat mass (148±124 g; p=0.237), lean mass (117±92g; p=0.205). Head circumference was greater in LI at 59 wks (0.46±0.21mm; p=0.003).
The intervention effects on body composition observed at birth were not sustained into and beyond the post-natal period. Unmeasured early life factors that influence growth and body composition, not limited to nutrition and diet as examples, strongly impact post-natal growth and composition.