Background: In 2011, we launched the Smarter Pregnancy mobile health (mHealth) coaching program, which has shown to effectively improve inadequate nutrition and lifestyle behaviors in women before and during pregnancy. It is known that in deprived neighborhoods, risk factors for adverse pregnancy outcomes like inadequate nutrition and lifestyle behaviors accumulate. However, it has not yet been investigated whether the Smarter Pregnancy program is equally effective in women living in deprived neighborhoods. Objective: This paper aimed to study the associations between neighborhood deprivation and improvement of inadequate nutrition and lifestyle behaviors of women who were either contemplating pregnancy or already pregnant and subscribed to the Smarter Pregnancy program. Methods: We performed an additional analysis on data from women who used the Smarter Pregnancy program from 2011 to 2016. The program comprised 24 weeks of coaching on 5 nutrition and lifestyle behaviors, of which adequate intakes or lifestyle behaviors were defined as an intake of 200 grams or above of vegetables, 2 pieces of fruit, daily folic acid supplement use of 400 µg per day, and no smoking or alcohol consumption. Neighborhood deprivation was determined according to the status scores of the Netherlands Institute for Social Research. Logistic regression analyses and generalized estimating equation models were used to assess the associations between the neighborhood status score (NSS) and the improvement of inadequate nutrition and lifestyle behaviors, taking into account the behaviors at baseline. We adjusted the analyses for maternal age, body mass index, geographic origin, pregnancy status, and participation as a couple. Results: Of the 2554 women included, 521 participated with their male partner. Overall, daily vegetable intake was most frequently inadequate at the start of the program (77.72, 1985/2554). Women with a higher NSS (ie, nondeprived neighborhood) smoked less often (adjusted odds ratio [OR] 0.85; 95% CI 0.77-0.93), consumed alcohol more often (adjusted OR 1.14, 95% CI 1.04-1.24), and were less likely to complete the 24 weeks of coaching (OR 0.91, 95% CI 0.88-0.95) compared with women who lived in a neighborhood with a low NSS (ie, deprived). In the total group, the relative improvement of inadequate nutrition and lifestyle behaviors after 24 weeks of coaching was between 26% and 64%. NSS was negatively associated with this improvement, indicating that women with a higher NSS were less likely to improve inadequate nutrition and lifestyle behaviors, especially vegetable intake (adjusted OR 0.89, 95% CI 0.82-0.97). Conclusions: The Smarter Pregnancy mHealth coaching program empowers women to improve inadequate nutrition and lifestyle behaviors. Unexpectedly, the program seemed more effective in women living in deprived neighborhoods. It is important to unravel differences in needs and behaviors of specific target groups to further tailor the mHealth program on the basis of demographic characteristics like neighborhood deprivation.

Additional Metadata
Keywords pregnancy, telemedicine, lifestyle, nutritional status, preconception care
Persistent URL,
Journal Jmir Mhealth and Uhealth
Gootjes, D.V., van Dijk, M.R, Koster, M.P.H., Willemsen, S.P, Steegers, E.A.P, & Steegers-Theunissen, R.P.M. (2019). Neighborhood Deprivation and the Effectiveness of Mobile Health Coaching to Improve Periconceptional Nutrition and Lifestyle in Women: Survey in a Large Urban Municipality in the Netherlands. Jmir Mhealth and Uhealth, 7(4). doi:10.2196/11664