Preconception Health

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The Lancet has published  (April 18th issue) a series of 3 papers highlighting the importance of preconception health and suggesting context- specific interventions.

Health and nutrition of both men and women before conception is important not only for pregnancy outcomes but also for the lifelong health of their children and even the next generation. The preconception period can be seen in three different ways: from a biological standpoint as the days and weeks before embryo development; from the individual perspective as the time of wanting to conceive; and through a population lens as any time a woman is of childbearing age. This series of three papers highlights the importance and summarises the evidence of preconception health for future health and suggests context-specific interventions. It also calls for a social movement to achieve political engagement for health in this particular phase of life. The three papers, all published in the April 16th issue: are:

J.Stephenson et al. Before the beginning: nutrition and lifestyle in the preconception period and its importance for future health. The Lancet Vol 391. No. 10132

T.P. Fleming et al Origins of lifetime health around the time of conception: causes and consequences.  The Lancet  Vol 391. No. 10132

M.Barker et al Intervention strategies to improve nutrition and health behaviours before conception. The Lancet Vol 391 N010132