Knowledge of Diet and Lifestyle Measures for Hypertensive Disorders of Pregnancy


  • Fernandez Hospital Foundation, Department of Clinical Nutrition and Dietetics, Hyderabad, Telangana, 500 001, India


 Hypertensive Disorders of Pregnancy (HDP) pose significant risks to materno-fetal health. Appropriate knowledge of the condition ensures timely intervention. Dietary and lifestyle recommendations in HDP differ from those in the non-pregnant population. Salt restriction is not recommended and physical activity may be contraindicated. The aim of the study is to identify the knowledge of pregnant hypertensive Indian women about normal blood pressure in pregnancy, warning signs and complications of HDP and control measures. A cross sectional study was conducted in maternity centres using purposive convenience sampling and a structured questionnaire. Data was analysed using descriptive statistics. One hundred women completed the study. Sixty three per cent knew what constituted high blood pressure, 56% and 60% had a knowledge score of ≤ 50% for warning signs and complications of high blood pressure respectively. When questioned about control measures, women believed that dietary modifications (88%), physical activity (84%), bed rest (51%) and weight loss (44%) were important. With respect to knowledge of salt intake recommendations, 39% correctly identified the daily recommendation, 93% believed salt reduction is necessary and 21% believed salt elimination is required. Thirty nine per cent of women stated high calcium foods are beneficial for control. Post diagnosis, 80% and 38% reported salt reduction and use of low sodium salt, respectively. Traditional home remedies cited included bananas, spinach, curry leaf, garlic, barley water, flax seeds and beetroot. In adequate awareness of HDP may delay necessary medical interventions. Misconceptions regarding salt restriction need to be addressed to prevent iodine deficiency disorders. Counseling regarding a healthy diet for HDP and risks associated with excess physical activity and strict bed rest need to be communicated more effectively.


Hypertension, pregnancy, salt restriction, physical activity, knowledge

Subject Collection

India; Hyderabad

Subject Discipline

Nutrition; Obstetrics

Full Text:


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