A study to assess the awareness and knowledge about the maternal nutrition and complications encountered by the antenatal mothers in the rural population

Sindhu S., Vidhya D., Sivankumar K., Karthiga M. A.


Background: Nutrition plays a vital role in life. Good nutrition is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle. A healthy pregnancy diet will promote your baby's growth and development. The purpose of this study was to highlight the knowledge, attitude and practices of pregnant women regarding the healthy diet, psychological support, regular visits, danger signs and complications during pregnancy among mothers who visit our hospital along with different socio demographic factors.

Methods: This study was conducted on 350 antenatal women from January 2016 to February 2017 at Tamil Nadu, India. A 24 point- 15 minutes’ questionnaire was designed about the knowledge, attitude and practice about the nutrition, danger signs and complications in pregnancy.

Results: Around 98% of women were very clear that nutrition is necessary in pregnancy and 53% of them told that the quantity of food intake should be increased. Major source of knowledge about the nutrition was obtained from the family members (81%). The common danger sign was abdominal pain (61%) followed by bleeding per vaginum (22%). About 77% of mothers had an idea that minimum of 6-10 visit should be there in their antenatal period.

Conclusions: This study emphasizes that health professionals should concentrate more in the nutritional values and the antenatal classes should be taken regarding the role of adequate nutrition, constituents and sources of balanced diet and the consequences of over and under nutrition.


Antenatal, Danger sign, Nutrition

Full Text:



Lowdermilk. Nursing care of the family during pregnancy. In: Deitra L, Shannon E, Mary C,eds. Maternity nursing. US, Mosby; 2013:190-237.

Fraser M, Cooper A. Myles Textbook for Midwives. !4th ed., Churchill Livingston, Edinburgh; 2003:40-2.

Alkema L, Chou D, Hogan D, Zhang S, Moller A-B, Gemmill A et al; United Nations Maternal Mortality Estimation Inter- Agency Group collaborators and technical advisory group. Global, regional and national levels and trends in maternal mortality between 1990 and 2015, with scenario-based projections to 2030: a systemic analysis by the UN Maternal Mortality Estimation Inter Agency Group. Lancet. 2016;387(10017):462-74.

The World Bank. WHO, UNICEF, UNFPA, World Bank Group and the United Nation population division trends in maternal mortality:1990 to 2015. Geneva, WHO; 2015. Available from: URL:

Bhutta ZA, Chopra M, Axelson H, Berman P, Boerma T, Bryce J, et al. Countdown to 2015-decade report (2000–10): taking stock of maternal, newborn, and child survival. Lancet. 2010;375(9730):2032-44.

WHO recommendations on antenatal care for a positive pregnancy experience. Available from: URL:

Federal Democratic Republic of Ethiopia, Ministry of Health; management protocol on selected obstetrics topics, January; 2010.

Mulhausler B, Adam C, McMillan C, Maternal nutrition and the programming of obesity. Organogenensis. 2008;4(3):144-52.

Latifa MF, Manal HA, Nihal SS. Nutritional awareness of women during pregnancy. J American Sci. 2012;8(7):494-502.

Gupta R, Agarwal S, Singh N, Jain R, Katiyar A, Siddiqui A. A study to assess knowledge and attitude of antenatal women about maternal nutrition attending a tertiary care centre. Int J Reprod Contracep Obstet Gynecol. 2016;5:1549-52.

Wu G, Bazer F, Cudd, T. Maternal Nutrition and Fetal Development. J Nutrition. 2004;34: 2169-72.

Kabakyenga. Knowledge of obstetric danger signs and birth preparedness practices among women in rural Uganda Reproductive Health. 2011;8(33). Available at: /8/1/3.

Gebrehiwot H, Bahta S, Haile N. Awareness of Danger Signs of Pregnancy and its Associated Factors among Pregnant Women who Visit ANC in Mekelle Public Hospitals. Am J Adv Drug Deliv. 2014;2(2):164-73.