Nutritional supplementation of pregnant adolescents

David M. Paige, Angel Cordano, E. David Mellits, Juan M. Baertl, Lenora Davis

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Disadvantaged pregnant black teenagers have a higher proportion of low-birth-weight infants and their offspring have a lower mean birth weight. One hundred and fifty-seven pregnant adolescents enrolled in a Baltimore public school for pregnant teenagers were studied to determine the impact of a nutritional supplement on pregnancy outcome. Seventy-eight students voluntarily agreed to receive a nutritional supplement; 79 comparably matched students did not receive the supplement. The supplement Sustacal provided a mean intake of 8691 cal with 530 g of protein and additional vitamins and minerals over an average period of 15.1 weeks. This supplement was associated with a significant increase of 157 g in the mean infant birth weight (P<0.05). A significant increase in infant birth weight of 269 g was noted in the offspring of supplemented girls below 16 years of age compared with the nonsupplemented girls below this age (P<0.05). Significant differences in infant birth weight were also noted in the offspring of nonsmoking supplemented adolescents (P<0.05). The proportion of low-birth-weight infants was decreased in the supplemented subjects, but the difference was not significant.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)261-267
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Adolescent Health Care
Issue number4
StatePublished - Jun 1981


  • Low-birth-weight infant
  • Nutritional supplementation
  • Pregnancy
  • Smoking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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