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International Journal of Endocrinology
Volume 2012, Article ID 985136, 6 pages
http://dx.doi.org/10.1155/2012/985136
Clinical Study

A Pilot Study on Dietary Approaches in Multiethnicity: Two Methods Compared

Department of Medical and Surgical Sciences, U.O. of Metabolic Diseases and Diabetology, University of Padua, Via Giustiniani 2, 35143 Padua, Italy

Received 24 November 2011; Revised 30 December 2011; Accepted 30 December 2011

Academic Editor: Yariv Yogev

Copyright © 2012 Romina Valentini et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

Abstract

Background. Medical nutritional therapy is the most important method for normalizing glucose levels in pregnancy. In this setting, there is a new problem to consider relating to migrants, their personal food preferences, and ethnic, cultural, and religious aspects of their diet. We compared maternal and fetal outcomes between two multiethnic groups of pregnant women, one adopting a food plan that included dishes typical of the foreign women's original countries (the “ethnic meal plan” group), while the other group adopted a standard meal plan. Findings. To develop the meal plan, each dish chosen by the women was broken down into its principal ingredients. The quantity of each food was given in tablespoons, teaspoons, slices, and cups, and there were photographs of the complete dish. The group treated with the ethnic meal plan achieved a better metabolic control at the end of the pregnancy and a lower weight gain (though the difference was not statistically significant). As for fetal outcome, the group on the ethnic meal plan had babies with a lower birth weight and there were no cases of macrosomia or LGA babies. Conclusions. This preliminary study indicates the positive effect of an ethnic approach to diet on the outcome of pregnancy.