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ASPHN Releases Preconception Nutrition Resources for Clinical and Public Health

To our partner organizations supporting the Association of State Public Health Nutritionists:

Thank you for your alliance in helping us reach our goal to create new environmental norms where healthy eating and active living are the easy and natural choices for all Americans.  ASPHN is pleased to announce the release of the Preconception Health toolkit, produced through ASPHN by state-level nutrition practitioners who lead the field in maternal and child health.  Please share the Preconception Health link as you are able on your website, newsletters, listservs and other media platforms.

Preconception Health: The Role of Nutrition

This 3-document toolkit from the Association of State Public Health Nutritionists is a comprehensive guide for excellent preconception nutrition programs.  Preconception care is the foundation for the healthy life of our future generations. Nutrition professionals have the opportunity to shape preconception care at multiple levels, including clinical, community education and policy settings.  Summaries of each document are provided below, following the author’s note.

Note from one of the Authors:

“Nutrition services for women of reproductive age often focus only on treating nutrition deficiencies and/or chronic health conditions that are discovered after a pregnancy has occurred.  This approach to health care fails to capitalize on the potential for nutrition services before and between pregnancies to prevent (or at least minimize) health issues during pregnancy. Our current healthcare system fails to address many of the health issues that place a woman and her fetus at high risk, such as obesity and hypertension. These materials were developed to help healthcare providers integrate more preventive nutrition and health messages into existing postpartum services (such as breastfeeding support) as well as well-woman care visits for women of reproductive age.” Jamie Stang Ph.D, MPH, R.D.


Access the ASPHN Preconception Health 3-Document Toolkit

Preconception Health: The Role of Nutrition
This program overview document covers these practical application topics:
Review of preconception health theory
Research supporting nutrition for clinical and public health interventions
Identification of at-risk populations
Guidance for balanced nutrition, healthy weight maintenance and medical nutrition therapy
Processes to integrate preconception health approach in WIC programming

Communicating About Weight
As part of the Preconception Health toolkit, Communication About Weight is a 2-page resource that lays the foundation for respectful and successful cultural competence considerations about discussing weight with clients. It offers suggestions for language, phrasing and client-lead goal setting for counseling practice. Also, it offers guidance on how nutrition program managers can gain insight into the communication needs related to your specific service population.

Implementation Recommendations (WIC)
The final Preconception Health package document overlays preconception care concepts on the WIC framework and gives easy strategies to enhance your program.


For more information about the Preconception Health: The Role of Nutrition toolkit, please contact Karen Probert.

Founded in 1952, ASPHN is a non-profit membership organization that provides state and national leadership on food and nutrition issues, programs and services aimed at improving the health of our population. ASPHN’s membership is comprised of nearly 300 public health nutritionists located throughout all 50 states, the District of Columbia and five U.S. territories. As we celebrate over 60 years of service, our vision is to create new environmental norms where healthy eating and active living are the easy and natural choices for all Americans. ASPHN can be found on the Web at www.asphn.org and on Facebook at www.facebook.com/asphn.