ABSTRACT: BACKGROUND: Little is known about the use of organic food during pregnancy. The aim of this study was to describe characteristics associated with the use of organic food among pregnant women participating in the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study (MoBa). METHODS: The present study includes 63,561 women who during the years 2002-2007 answered two questionnaires, a general health questionnaire at gestational week 15 and a food frequency questionnaire at weeks 17-22. We used linear binomial regression with frequent versus rare use of organic food as outcome variable and characteristics of the respondent as independent variables. The outcome variable was derived from self-reported frequency of organic food use in six main food groups (milk/dairy, bread/cereal, eggs, vegetables, fruit and meat). RESULTS: Organic eggs and vegetables were the food items which were most frequently reported to be used "often" or "mostly". The proportion of women reporting frequent intake of organic food was 9.1% (n=5754). This group included more women in the lower (40 years) age-groups, with normal or low body mass index, who were vegetarians, exercised regularly (3+times weekly), consumed alcohol and smoked cigarettes during pregnancy (p
A large proportion of young children spend most of their weekdays at preschool in Western countries. In Finland, three meals are included in a full day at preschool. These meals have the potential to promote healthy eating. This study aimed to obtain the personnel's (preschool teachers, day-care nurses) views on the factors influencing children's fruit, vegetable, and sugar-enriched food intake at preschool.
Four focus groups, in all 14 preschool personnel. Two researchers independently analysed the data using a socio-ecological framework.
At the child level, age, peers, and the child's personality were recognized as factors influencing the fruit and vegetable (FV) and sugar-enriched food intake. At the preschool level, both the physical and social environments were discussed thoroughly, whereas at the societal level, policies of the EU, the state, and the municipality were mentioned as factors that influence what children eat in preschool. The personnel also discussed the interactions between factors both between levels and within levels.
In Finnish preschools, children's food intake is influenced on and within several levels of the socio-ecological model. The identification of the factors influencing food intake allows different methods of intervention at multiple levels to promote healthy eating behaviours in preschools.
The etiologies of the male urogenital anomalies hypospadias and cryptorchidism remain unclear. It has been suggested that maternal diet and environmental contaminants may affect the risk of these anomalies via placental or hormonal disturbances.
We examined associations between organic food consumption during pregnancy and prevalence of hypospadias and cryptorchidism at birth.
Our study includes 35,107 women participating in the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study (MoBa) who delivered a singleton male infant. Information about use of six groups of organically produced food (vegetables, fruit, bread/cereal, milk/dairy products, eggs, and meat) during pregnancy was collected by a food frequency questionnaire. Women who indicated that they sometimes, often, or mostly consumed organic foods in at least one of the six food groups were classified as organic food consumers in analyses. Hypospadias and cryptorchidism diagnoses were retrieved from the Medical Birth Registry of Norway. We estimated odds ratios (ORs) and 95% confidence intervals (CIs) using multiple logistic regression.
Seventy-four male newborns were diagnosed with hypospadias (0.2%), and 151 with cryptorchidism (0.4%). Women who consumed any organic food during pregnancy were less likely to give birth to a boy with hypospadias (OR = 0.42; 95% CI: 0.25, 0.70, based on 21 exposed cases) than women who reported they never or seldom consumed organic food. Associations with specific organic foods were strongest for vegetable (OR = 0.36; 95% CI: 0.15, 0.85; 10 exposed cases) and milk/dairy (OR = 0.43; 95% CI: 0.17, 1.07; 7 exposed cases) consumption. No substantial association was observed for consumption of organic food and cryptorchidism.
Consumption of organically produced foods during pregnancy was associated with a lower prevalence of hypospadias in our study population. These findings were based on small numbers of cases and require replication in other study populations.
Little is known about the potential health effects of eating organic food either in the general population or during pregnancy. The aim of this study was to examine associations between organic food consumption during pregnancy and the risk of pre-eclampsia among nulliparous Norwegian women.
Prospective cohort study.
Norway, years 2002-2008.
28 192 pregnant women (nulliparous, answered food frequency questionnaire and general health questionnaire in mid-pregnancy and no missing information on height, body weight or gestational weight gain).
Relative risk was estimated as ORs by performing binary logistic regression with pre-eclampsia as the outcome and organic food consumption as the exposure.
The prevalence of pre-eclampsia in the study sample was 5.3% (n=1491). Women who reported to have eaten organic vegetables 'often' or 'mostly' (n=2493, 8.8%) had lower risk of pre-eclampsia than those who reported 'never/rarely' or 'sometimes' (crude OR=0.76, 95% CI 0.61 to 0.96; adjusted OR=0.79, 95% CI 0.62 to 0.99). The lower risk associated with high organic vegetable consumption was evident also when adjusting for overall dietary quality, assessed as scores on a healthy food pattern derived by principal component analysis. No associations with pre-eclampsia were found for high intake of organic fruit, cereals, eggs or milk, or a combined index reflecting organic consumption.
These results show that choosing organically grown vegetables during pregnancy was associated with reduced risk of pre-eclampsia. Possible explanations for an association between pre-eclampsia and use of organic vegetables could be that organic vegetables may change the exposure to pesticides, secondary plant metabolites and/or influence the composition of the gut microbiota.
Life style diseases contribute heavily to inequalities in health. Thus, there is a need for a better understanding of factors affecting health-related habits, such as diet and exercise, among different groups of people. In this study, the work situation is chosen as a point of departure for analyses on health-related perceptions and habits among men from three different occupations: 20 carpenters, 15 engineers and 11 drivers in Oslo, Norway. The data were collected by in depth semi-structured interviews. There were clear differences in the way men in the three types of work view food, meals, the body and physical activity. The distribution of different types of meals throughout the day was also tied to the type of work. This was linked to notions of food as fuel for immediate body functioning, vis a vis body shape and future health. The differences observed are most likely a mixture and mutual reinforcement of demands related to the work situation as well as the socio-cultural background, level of knowledge and education. Benefits at work were also different; those in higher positions (engineers) received most healthy benefits, such as fruit baskets, healthy lunches, and participation in physical activities. These may contribute to the already large differences in health practices.