New research links outdoor air temperature and risk of developing gestational diabetes
TORONTO, May 15, 2017 - Women who were exposed to colder temperatures during pregnancy had a lower rate of gestational diabetes than those exposed to hotter temperatures, according to a study published online today in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.
The prevalence of gestational diabetes was 4.6 per cent among women exposed to extremely cold average temperatures (equal to or below -10 C) in the 30-day period prior to being screened for gestational diabetes, and increased to 7.7 per cent among those exposed to hot average temperatures (above 24 C). The study also found that for every 10-degree Celsius rise in temperature, women were six to nine per cent more likely to develop gestational diabetes.
The study examined 555,911 births among 396,828 women over a 12-year period. All the women studied lived in the Greater Toronto Area, but some were pregnant when the average temperature was warmer, and some when it was cooler.
Researchers looked at the relationship between the average 30-day air temperature prior to the time of gestational diabetes screening in the second trimester, and the likelihood of gestational diabetes diagnosis.
Dr. Gillian Booth, a researcher at St. Michael's and the Institute for Clinical Evaluative Sciences (ICES) and lead author of the study, said the finding might seem counterintuitive, but can be explained by emerging science about how humans make different kinds of fat.
"Many would think that in warmer temperatures, women are outside and more active, which would help limit the weight gain in pregnancy that predisposes a woman to gestational Continue reading