Control link to mums’ weight

CONTROL: Dr Emily Kothe.

A LACK of self-control could be why pregnant women eat too much and balloon beyond normal weight limits, according to Geelong psychology researchers.
Deakin University psychology lecturer Emily Kothe said their world-first research would investigate why one in two pregnant women put on excess weight despite their motivation to eat well.
The reason might be a lack of self-control over food choices during pregnancy, Dr Kothe said.
“We know that we only achieve about 47 per cent of all the things we intend to do, partly due to lapses in self-control that make it hard to act on our intentions even when we’re motivated.
“So we all have a self-control limit, which is more likely to be reached when we’re stressed or tired or have been paying a lot of attention to controlling our behaviour.
“It’s possible that with all of the extra things that women have to deal with while pregnant, they simply reach the limit of their self-control when it comes to what they eat.”
The Deakin research is the first to investigate whether self-control lapses might leave some women struggling to maintain healthy diets during pregnancy.
“Through our study we want to find out why such a motivated group of women struggle so much when it comes to maintaining a healthy diet,” Dr Kothe said.
“The results will help to identify women who are at particular risk of slipping into poor eating patterns during pregnancy and to make sure that those women get effective support to meet their own healthy eating goals.
“We’re looking for women who are currently pregnant to take part in an online survey, so women from all around Australia can easily participate.”
Dr Kothe said women could participate in the study at facebook.com/eating.for.two.study.

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