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Yale ❤ Moms Study: Helping Women Live Longer and Healthier Lives

Principal Investigator: Dr. Heather Lipkind

Study Summary

Photo by iStock Photography

Becoming a mother is a wonderful and exciting time. It is also a time to take the opportunity to “improve your health to benefit the whole family”. The Yale ❤ Moms study is held at 6-12 months after delivery and focuses on prevention and lifestyle modification for women who may be at increased risk for heart disease.

For ALL Postpartum Women:

Did you have a baby within the past year? You might be eligible to join our study and earn up to $100. We will provide you with a $100 dollar gift card. If you participate in this study you will learn about your health by getting a screening for your numbers for blood sugar, blood pressure and cholesterol. If these are high, you are more likely to have heart disease and other health problems. We can teach you some skills for how to become and stay healthy.

Yale ❤ Moms

is dedicated to improving mothers’ health by studying the association between pregnancy and heart disease risk.

Our goals are:

1) To identify women's risk factors for heart disease

2) To educate women on the links between pregnancy complications and heart disease risk

3) To teach all women, even those with healthy pregnancies, tools to live longer and healthier lives

The Details

Women who are at least 18 years old and have recently had a baby may be able participate in the Yale ❤ Moms Study. Women who were diagnosed with a condition called preeclampsia will be encouraged to participate in this research program so that we can evaluate their potential risk of health issues, but we encourage all women to join.

What does the study involve and what is the time commitment?

Participation in this study consists of the following research activities:

  • 1 blood draw (totaling 20mL, or 2 tablespoons of blood)
  • Urine assessment for protein (2 ml)
  • Height, weight, body fat and waist circumference measurement
  • Blood pressure assessment
  • Family and medical history
  • Nutritional assessment
  • Perceptions of risk and health care system
  • Questions about how you handle stress
  • Education visit and description of your risk for future metabolic disease

The Postpartum Period as a Time for Change

The first year after delivery is a great opportunity for moms to adopt a healthier lifestyle. Making healthy food choices and developing an exercise routine can greatly benefit your overall health and help fight against disease and illness. Remember, your health also affects the well being of your family!

What is Heart Disease?

Cardiovascular disease, or heart disease, is any condition that affects the structure or function of the heart and blood vessels. It can lead to heart attacks and stroke. Early diagnosis and treatment of risk factors can prevent up to 80% of heart disease.

Risk Factors for Heart Disease

Understanding the risks is the first step in decreasing your chances of developing heart disease. You cannot change some heart disease risk factors like age and gender, but you can reduce others through lifestyle changes. Diet and exercise can help with weight loss and improve cholesterol and blood pressure levels.

Risk factors for heart disease that you can change include:

  • High cholesterol
  • High blood pressure
  • Diabetes
  • Being overweight
  • Physical inactivity
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol consumption
  • Stress

Pregnancy Complications and Heart Disease

Some pregnancy risk factors such as preeclampsia (high blood pressure) in pregnancy can often reveal very early risk signs for future health issues like heart disease for all women. New moms who have experienced preeclampsia are urged to take this opportunity to be proactive and develop a healthy lifestyle in order to minimize their risk of heart disease later in life.

The MotHERS Program: Mothers Health Education, Research & Screening

Learn more about our collaborators in Canada and the MotHERS program.

Contact us

We would love to hear from you!

Please email or call Lauren Perley