A new UK study has claimed that body mass index (BMI) and a person’s age are able to predict the risk of gestational diabetes, especially for African and South Asian women. Gestational diabetes, where women exhibit high levels of blood sugar during their pregnancy prior to receiving any diagnosis of diabetes, results from the patient not secreting the excess insulin needed during pregnancy.
The study, which was published in An International Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, examined the relationship between age, BMI and racial origin with the development of gestational diabetes, as well as how they interact with each other.
The data from 585,291 pregnancies between 1988 and 2000 was assessed, including 1,688 women who developed gestational diabetes mellitus and 172,632 who did not have the condition. A close link was found between the development of gestational diabetes and advancing maternal age, a result that changes depending on the racial group involved.
The risk of developing gestational diabetes was substantially greater for black African women older than 25 years of age, and older than 20 years for women of South Asian origin. For Europeans, on the other hand, the chances were higher for women older than 30 years. In addition, the rate of gestational diabetes increases quicker with age.
Researcher Makrina Savvidou commented “It is important that clinicians are aware of all the contributing factors as gestational diabetes can result in adverse perinatal outcomes.”

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