Maternal Obesity

maternal-obesity-cover-smallAround the globe, more than 300 million women are obese—a grave concern given the harmful toll excess weight takes on pregnant women and their children. Maternal Obesity (Cambridge University Press, 2012) compiles the latest research about obesity in women of childbearing age into one comprehensive volume. The book thoroughly examines the adverse health effects of obesity during pregnancy on both mother and child, and it gives clinicians advice on how to respond to this growing global challenge.

Edited by Matthew Gillman of the Harvard Medical School and Harvard School of Public Health and Lucilla Poston of King’s College in London, the book discusses the health risks associated with obesity in women of childbearing age such as infertility, labor complications, and unhealthy birth outcomes. It also explores the “developmental origins” hypothesis, examining the profound effect that an obese mother’s in-utero environment has on the health of her developing child, including the child’s risk of obesity and chronic disease later in life. Finally, it outlines possible approaches to combating maternal obesity and public health policies that could prevent this growing problem.

The book explains the challenges of maternal obesity from individual, public health, and policymaking perspectives. It will be a vital guide for public health practitioners and policymakers pursuing solutions to the maternal obesity crisis, as well as for obstetricians, gynecologists, pediatricians, family practitioners, endocrinologists, midwives, and dietitians.

Dr. Gillman is a professor and Director of the Obesity Prevention Program in the Department of Population Medicine at Harvard Medical School and professor in the Department of Nutrition at Harvard School of Public Health.

Learn more about Maternal Obesity at Cambridge University Press’ website.

Read a related article on The Obesity Prevention Source, Understanding Obesity’s Developmental Origins.