Omega 3s in Pregnant Moms Reduce Childhood Obesity
According to new research from Harvard Medical School, pregnant mothers who get an adequate intake of omega-3 fatty acids may lower the risk of childhood obesity by 32 percent.
The study examined the relationship between the type of fat a mother consumed at mid-pregnancy and whether her child was obese at age 3, determined by body mass index (BMI) and skinfold measurements. The researchers reported that enhanced omega-3 status in mother and fetus was associated with lower childhood obesity. Consuming Omega-3 fatty acids (especially EPA and DHA) is associated with several health benefits, including improving of fat metabolism, preventing heart disease, and reducing inflammation. In addition, omega-3s reduce fat levels in animals fed a high-fat diet. The researchers reported that even though around one fifth of the expectant mothers ate more than 2 fish meals per week at mid-pregnancy, only about half of these women achieved the recommend intake of DHA of 200 mg per day. Only three percent of pregnant women in the study were found to consume the recommended intake of 200 mg/day of DHA in the last month of pregnancy. (The last month of pregnancy is when large amounts of DHA are transferred from the mother to the infant to support brain development.)
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