Maternal Vegetable and Fruit Consumption during Pregnancy in Latvia

Dārta Jakovicka, Elvita Penka, Rimma Kince, Laila Meija (Scientific Reviewer), Vinita Cauce (Scientific Reviewer), Violeta Bule (Scientific Reviewer)

Research output: Contribution to conferenceAbstractpeer-review


Keywords. Maternal health; Pregnancy; Vegetables; Fruits
Objectives. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends consuming at least 400g of fruit and vegetables daily. However, the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Latvia recommends raising it to 500 g daily for pregnant women, with at least 300 g of vegetables. As a result, determining whether pregnant women in Latvia consume an adequate amount of fruits and vegetables is critical for both maternal and fetal health.
Materials and methods. The study was carried out as part of the Latvian Council of Sciences project Nr.lzp-2019/1-0335. This cross-sectional study included 291 women until the 7th day post-partum in 8 Latvian healthcare institutions who consented to a face-to-face interview using a food frequency questionnaire from July 2020 to December 2021. IBM SPSS 27.0 was used to analyze the data.
Results. 50.9% (n=148) of women reported daily fruit-eating of less than 200 g, and 56.7% (n=165) reported insufficient vegetable consumption (less than 200 g), with the lowest rates reporting daily consumption of less than 10 g. Between meal snacks were chosen in 85.0% of cases (n=243), however, in only 37.1% of the cases (n=106), vegetables were chosen, while sweets were chosen in an alarmingly high number – in 54.5% cases (n=156). Only 25.1% (n=73) of pregnant women attempted to eat healthier; in 18.3% cases (n=53), they increased their fruit consumption, while in 24.4% cases (n=71), they increased their vegetable intake. Despite prior findings, there is no statistically significant correlation (p>0.05) between the amount of fruits or vegetables consumed and the rate of pregnancy complications or the infant’s weight after delivery.
Conclusions. Consumption of fruits and vegetables was insufficient and fell short of the recommendations by WHO and the Ministry of Health of the Republic of Latvia. Future research would be needed to conduct a more comprehensive analysis of nutritional intake during pregnancy


  • maternal health
  • Pregnancy
  • Vegetables
  • Fruits
  • Latvia
  • Healthy diet
  • Food

Field of Science*

  • 3.3 Health sciences

Publication Type*

  • 3.4. Other publications in conference proceedings (including local)


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