Omega-3 intake during late pregnancy may boost babys cognitive, motor developmentApril 10th, 2008 - 12:04 pm ICT by admin
Washington, April 10 (ANI): Researchers at the Universite Laval have suggested that consumption of Omega-3 fatty acids in the last months of pregnancy improves an infants sensory, cognitive, and motor development.
For the study, researchers Gina Muckle and Eric Dewailly first measured docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) concentration, a type of omega-3 fatty acid involved in the development of neurons and retinas, in the umbilical cord blood of 109 infants.
DHA concentration in the umbilical cord is a good indicator of intra-uterine exposure to omega-3s during the last trimester of pregnancy, a crucial period for the development of retinal photoreceptors and neurons, explained Dr. Dewailly.
Following this, the researchers conducted tests on these infants at 6 and 11 months.
The results showed that the babies visual acuity as well as their cognitive and motor development were closely linked to DHA concentration in the umbilical cord blood at the time of their birth.
However, there was very little relation between test results and DHA concentration in a mothers milk among infants who were breast-fed.
These results highlight the crucial importance of prenatal exposure to omega-3s in a childs development, said Dr. Muckle.
Researchers observed that DHA concentration in the umbilical cord blood was in direct relation with the concentration found in a mothers blood, a reminder of the importance of a mothers diet in providing omega-3 fatty acids for the fetus.
They also noted that DHA concentration was higher in the fetuss blood than in the mothers.
While developing its nervous system, a fetus needs great quantities of DHA. It can even transform other types of omega-3s into DHA in order to develop its brain, said Dr. Dewailly.
The researchers recommend that all pregnant women should be encouraged to get sufficient amounts of omega-3s.
A diet rich in omega-3s during pregnancy cant be expected to solve everything, but our results show that such a diet has positive effects on a childs sensory, cognitive, and motor development. Benefits from eating fish with low contaminant levels and high omega-3 contents, such as trout, salmon, and sardines, far outweigh potential risks even during pregnancy, the researchers concluded.
The study is published in a recent edition of the Journal of Pediatrics. (ANI)
- Fish diet in pregnancy bolsters progeny's intelligence - Feb 01, 2012
- Low levels of Omega fatty acids weaken memory - Feb 28, 2012
- How omega-3 fatty acids keep blindness at bay - Feb 10, 2011
- Omega-3 fatty acids good for heart, bad for prostate - Apr 26, 2011
- Turmeric may help walking ability in spinal injuries - Jun 27, 2012
- Eating fish oil while pregnant may cut risk of postpartum depression - Apr 13, 2011
- Omega-3 deficiency may explain depressive behaviours - Jan 31, 2011
- DHA 'fish oil' supplements 'not useful for those with mild Alzheimer's' - Nov 03, 2010
- Eating fish powers brain - Oct 25, 2011
- Omega-3 fatty acid boosts brainpower - Jun 29, 2012
- Fish oil in pregnancy doesn't boost baby's brain power - Oct 20, 2010
- Bingeing on soda, sweets makes you a dim wit - May 16, 2012
- Study: Fish oil supplements are not much help during pregnancy - Oct 21, 2010
- Canola-type rapeseed oil cuts levels of inflammation - Nov 09, 2010
- Unique genetic adaptation helped our brain grow - Apr 13, 2012
Tags: 3 fatty acids, concentration, fetus, last trimester of pregnancy, late pregnancy, months of pregnancy, mothers milk, muckle, neurons, omega 3 fatty acid, omega 3 fatty acids, omega 3s, pregnant women, prenatal exposure, retinal photoreceptors, retinas, study researchers, trimester of pregnancy, umbilical cord blood, visual acuity