The moderating role of the built environment in prenatal lifestyle interventions

the LIFE-Moms consortium

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


This study examined whether the neighborhood built environment moderated gestational weight gain (GWG) in LIFE-Moms clinical trials. Participants were 790 pregnant women (13.9 weeks’ gestation) with overweight or obesity randomized within four clinical centers to standard care or lifestyle intervention to reduce GWG. Geographic information system (GIS) was used to map the neighborhood built environment. The intervention relative to standard care significantly reduced GWG (coefficient = 0.05; p = 0.005) and this effect remained significant (p < 0.03) after adjusting for built environment variables. An interaction was observed for presence of fast food restaurants (coefficient = −0.007; p = 0.003). Post hoc tests based on a median split showed that the intervention relative to standard care reduced GWG in participants living in neighborhoods with lower fast food density 0.08 [95% CI, 0.03,0.12] kg/week (p = 0.001) but not in those living in areas with higher fast food density (0.02 [−0.04, 0.08] kg/week; p = 0.55). Interaction effects suggested less intervention efficacy among women living in neighborhoods with more grocery/convenience stores (coefficient = −0.005; p = 0.0001), more walkability (coefficient −0.012; p = 0.007) and less crime (coefficient = 0.001; p = 0.007), but post-hoc tests were not significant. No intervention x environment interaction effects were observed for total number of eating establishments or tree canopy. Lifestyle interventions during pregnancy were effective across diverse physical environments. Living in environments with easy access to fast food restaurants may limit efficacy of prenatal lifestyle interventions, but future research is needed to replicate these findings.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1357-1361
Number of pages5
JournalInternational Journal of Obesity
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2021

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Endocrinology, Diabetes and Metabolism
  • Medicine (miscellaneous)


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