Navigation Links
Pica in pregnant teens linked to low iron
Date:8/20/2014

ITHACA, N.Y. In a study of 158 pregnant teenagers in Rochester, NY, nearly half engaged in pica the craving and intentional consumption of ice, cornstarch, vacuum dust, baby powder and soap, and other nonfood items, reports a new Cornell study.

Moreover, such teens had significantly lower iron levels as compared with teens who did not eat nonfood substances.

Pregnant teens, regardless of pica, are at higher risk for low hemoglobin, which can lead to iron deficiency and anemia. Low iron in pregnant teens raises the risk of premature births and babies with low birth weights, which in turn increases infant mortality rates.

"In this study, the strength of the association between pica and anemia is as big as any known causal factor of anemia in pregnant teens; this is a very strong association," said Sera Young, a research scientist in nutritional sciences in Cornell's College of Human Ecology and a co-author of the study published online in the Journal of Nutrition.

In the study, pica behaviors and iron deficiency increased over the course of the pregnancies. "As anemia increased, so did these behaviors, but we don't know what happens first," said Kimberly O'Brien, professor of nutritional sciences and the study's senior author.

The study included African-American, white and Latina pregnant teens. Of the nearly 47 percent of adolescents who reported pica behaviors, most 82 percent craved ice, followed by starches, powders, soap, paper, plastic foam such as pillow stuffing or sponges, baking soda, and a few other items.

Texture appears to be very important to those engaged in pica and is one commonality among the types of substances consumed.

When people crave ice, they consume "cups and cups and cups of it," said Young. At the same time, "ice is not going to change someone's iron status," said O'Brien, leading to her hypothesis that iron deficiency may have an effect on brain chemistry that leads to these cravings.

"The public health importance of pica really needs to be acknowledged," said Young. "My hope is that these studies put pica on the radar as a legitimate public health issue."


'/>"/>
Contact: Melissa Osgood
mmo59@cornell.edu
607-255-2059
Cornell University
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. 2 servings of salmon a week is healthy for pregnant women and their babies
2. Vitamin D for pregnant women and babies -- how much is enough?
3. Considerable prevalence of both malaria, STIs exist among pregnant women in sub-Saharan Africa
4. Overweight pregnant women not getting proper weight-gain advice
5. Few pregnant women treated for sexually transmitted infections
6. Progesterone may be why pregnant women are more vulnerable to certain infections
7. Eating junk food while pregnant may make your child a junk food addict
8. Study reveals risk factors for blood clots in pregnant and postnatal women
9. Pregnant women with high celiac disease antibodies are at risk for low birth weight babies
10. Antiepileptic drug use while pregnant impacts early child development
11. Diets of pregnant women contain harmful, hidden toxins
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:1/22/2016)... January 22, 2016 ... addition of the  "Global Behavioral Biometric ... --> http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/4lmf2s/global_behavioral ) has ... Behavioral Biometric Market 2016-2020"  report to ... and Markets ( http://www.researchandmarkets.com/research/4lmf2s/global_behavioral ) has announced ...
(Date:1/20/2016)... --  MedNet Solutions , an innovative SaaS-based eClinical technology ... is pleased to announce the attainment of record-setting corporate ... of the company,s laser focus on (and growing international ... comprehensive, easy-to-use and highly affordable cloud-based technology platform. ... growth achievements in 2015 include: , Record ...
(Date:1/13/2016)... 2016 --> ... market report titled - Biometric Sensors Market - Global Industry ... 2023. According to the report, the global biometric sensors market was valued ... reach US$1,625.8 mn by 2023, expanding at a CAGR ... volume, the biometric sensors market is expected to reach ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:2/5/2016)...  In the pharmaceutical industry the medical affairs function ... activities including the identification and engagement of key thought ... high in the oncology therapeutic area where most treating ... Role of Medical Affairs in Oncology Launch Excellence ." ... find better ways to utilize medical affairs to develop ...
(Date:2/5/2016)... , Feb. 5, 2016 Australian-US drug discovery ... announced today the appointment of a new Chairman, Mr ... Carmine , effective immediately. James Garner , ... Executive Director and former Acting CEO, Mr Iain Ross ... Non-Executive Director. --> James Garner , has also ...
(Date:2/4/2016)... -- Sangamo BioSciences, Inc. (NASDAQ: SGMO ), the leader ... Lanphier , Sangamo,s president and chief executive officer, will ... Therapeutic ® development programs and an overview of ... Thursday, February 11, 2016, at the Leerink Partners 5 ... being held in New York . ...
(Date:2/4/2016)... Beike Biotechnology, the Shenzhen ... ceremony in late 2015 to mark their successful combined ... --> --> The ... Cell Therapy" was hosted by the Shenzhen Cell Bank ... of Beike Biotechnology Co., Ltd. Shenzhen,s ...
Breaking Biology Technology: