Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Dietetics Administration (MDA)


Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Sciences

Committee Chair(s)

Janette Kudin


Janette Kudin


Nedra Christensen


Ann Martin-Mildenhall


Objective: The objectives of this study were to evaluate the demographic data of the study population, compare nutrition knowledge and retention in Hispanic pregnant women who were newly diagnosed with gestational diabetes (GDM) or with a history of GDM at time of GDM diagnosis and prior to delivery, and determine if the Sweet Success education program’s curriculum was effective in improving overall knowledge in pregnant women with GDM.

Design: A quasi-experimental design was used with a convenience sample.

Subjects/Setting: Ninety women between the ages of 18 and 45 years and of Hispanic or Hispanic American descent were recruited for this study. Participants were selected from Van Nuys, California area that had been diagnosed with GDM for the first time or had a history of GDM.

Interventions: After being diagnosed with GDM, women were referred by their obstetrics-gynecologist (OB-GYN) to Valley Presbyterian Hospital’s (VPH) Perinatology Clinic for GDM management. Women received a two hour group education session with a registered dietitian (RD), were enrolled in the Sweet Success education program, and received a follow up education session one to two weeks after their first visit to the clinic.

Outcome: Measure A questionnaire, along with a pre-and post-test were administered in English and Spanish to participants to assess knowledge about GDM, diet, and blood glucose management at their initial visit to the clinic. At the completion of the first follow-up visit to the clinic, the participant completed a post-test.

Statistical Analysis: Demographic characteristics were first evaluated. Increase in percentage in regards to the number of questions participants got correct was also evaluated along with paired t-tests comparing overall knowledge improvement.

Results: A majority of participants were noted to be primary of Hispanic descent, Spanish speaking, over-weight or obese, low income, having an educational level of less than 12th grade, and receiving medical care through Medi-Cal. An increase in percentage in regards to the number of questions participants got correct improved for all questions and mean test scores improved overall in participants between pre- and post-tests with a significant difference also noted.

Conclusions: In conclusion, the results of this study showed an increase in knowledge retention among Hispanic pregnant women with GDM and validate the importance and impact that the Sweet Success program’s education curriculum and model of care has on a women’s health and the health of her unborn child.


This work made publicly available electronically on April 12, 2012.