Nurse-Midwifery M.S.

Year Approved


First Advisor

Wu, Katrina

Second Reader

Renee Clark


Introduction: Hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (HDP) are complications that present many problems for both mothers and infants. The purpose of this systematic review is to identify what dietary patterns and supplements could decrease the incidence of HDP. Methods: A literature search of articles between 2010 and 2022 was conducted using the CINAHL, PubMed, and Scopus databases, along with an ancestry and journal hand search. Quantitative studies of pregnant or pre-pregnant participants that addressed the effects of diet or supplementation on gestational hypertension or preeclampsia were included. A literature matrix was created, and the Johns Hopkins model was used to guide the quality assessment of the articles. Results: Twenty-nine studies met criteria for review. Fifteen studied foods, and fourteen studied dietary supplementation. The food articles had mixed results on the effectiveness of different diets and rates of HDP. Low sodium diets were found to decrease the incidence of HDP, while highly processed foods and foods high in fat or sugar increased the incidence. While some studies examining various supplements did successfully decrease HDP, these findings were not consistent across all studies. Discussion: A diet consisting of whole foods, organic vegetables, mushrooms, and milk-based probiotics that is also low in processed foods, added sugar, and salt, can reduce the risk of developing a HDP and should be recommended to pregnant people or those planning to become pregnant. As supplements were not found to consistently decrease rates of HDP across all studies, they cannot be universally recommended. More research on these diets and supplements is needed to create a stronger recommendation.

Degree Name

M.S. Nurse-Midwifery

Document Type

Masterʼs thesis