Background: Obesity presents a significant health concern among low-income, ethnic minority women of childbearing age. Purpose: The study investigated the influence of maternal acculturation, family negativity, and family support on postpartum weight loss among low-income Mexican-origin women. Methods: Low-income Mexican-origin women (N=322; 14% born in the U.S.) were recruited from a prenatal clinic in an urban area of the Southwest U.S. Acculturation was assessed during a prenatal home visit (26–38 weeks gestation), and post-birth family support and general family negativity were assessed at 6 weeks postpartum. Objective maternal weight measures were obtained at five time points across the first postpartum year. Results: Higher acculturation predicted higher family support and family negativity. Higher family support predicted decreasing weight across the first postpartum year, and higher family negativity predicted higher weight at 6 weeks postpartum and increasing weight across the first postpartum year. In combination, family negativity and support mediated the impact of acculturation on postpartum weight gain. Conclusions: Cultural and family-related factors play a significant role in postpartum weight gain and loss for low-income Mexican-origin women.
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Psychiatry and Mental health