Navigation Links
Typical North American diet is deficient in omega-3 fatty acids
Date:3/7/2008

(Vancouver Friday, March 7, 2008) New research from the Child & Family Research Institute shows the typical North American diet of eating lots of meat and not much fish is deficient in omega-3 fatty acids and this may pose a risk to infant neurological development. Omega-3 fatty acids are unsaturated fats found in some fish such as salmon and herring and in smaller amounts in eggs and chicken. This discovery is an important step towards developing dietary fat guidelines for pregnant and breastfeeding women. Current dietary recommendations evolved from the 1950s emphasis on reducing saturated fat intake to lower the risk of cardiovascular disease.

The study is published March 7th, 2008 in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Omega 3 fatty acids are important for the babys developing eyes and brain, says Dr. Sheila Innis, the studys principal investigator, head of the nutrition and metabolism program at the Child & Family Research Institute at BC Childrens Hospital, and professor, department of pediatrics, University of British Columbia.

During pregnancy and breastfeeding, fat consumed by the mum is transferred to the developing baby and breastfed infant, and this fat is important for the babys developing organs. Our next task is to find out why the typical North American diet puts mothers at risk. Then we can develop dietary recommendations to help women consume a nutritious diet that promotes optimal health for mums and babies.

The researchers found that the women who ate lots of meat and little fish were deficient in omega-3 fatty acids, and their babies didnt do as well on eye tests as babies from mothers who werent deficient. The results were noticeable as early as two months of age. The study is ongoing as the researchers intend to follow the childrens development until four years of age.

For the study, the researchers recruited 135 pregnant women and randomly assigned them to either a group that took an omega-3 fatty acid supplement or one that took a placebo. All the women continued eating their regular diets. The supplement added the equivalent of two fatty fish meals per week, an amount that the researchers estimated would prevent deficiency. The researchers tested the womens blood samples at 16 and 36 weeks of pregnancy and measured the amount of DHA (docasohexaenoic acid), a type of omega-3 fatty acids thats known to be important for brain and eye function.

After the babies were born, the researchers did vision tests to evaluate the infants ability to distinguish lines of different widths. Its an innovative way of evaluating neurological maturity in babies who are unable to talk. Since the eyes are connected to the brain, they reflect the brains development.

The aim of this study was to contribute to a growing body of knowledge that focuses on the dietary needs of pregnant and breastfeeding women. More research is needed to identify recommended daily amounts of omega 3 fatty acids.

For better health, its important for pregnant and nursing mums and all of us to eat a wide variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, nuts, eggs, and fish while minimizing consumption of processed and prepared foods, says Dr. Innis.


'/>"/>

Contact: Jennifer Kohm
jkohm@cw.bc.ca
604-875-2401
Child & Family Research Institute
Source:Eurekalert

Related biology news :

1. Cogent Systems and Northrop Grumman Reach Agreement to Settle Automated Fingerprint Identification Technology Suit and Create Strategic Alliance
2. Cogent Systems and Northrop Grumman Reach Agreement to Settle Automated Fingerprint Identification Technology Suit and Create Strategic Alliance
3. North Americas northernmost lake affected by global warming
4. Three-way mating game of North American lizard found in distant European relative
5. Toxic releases down from North American industry leaders, increasing from other facilities
6. Northwestern to expose most deadly infectious diseases in 3-D
7. Wildfire drives carbon levels in northern forests
8. Cornell will host the Northeast Biofuel Summit, Nov. 11-13
9. Northwestern study looks at sensing, movement and behavior
10. Climate change predicted to drive trees northward
11. UT-Houstons Northrup and colleagues uncover genetic link to spina bifida
Post Your Comments:
*Name:
*Comment:
*Email:
(Date:6/16/2016)... June 16, 2016 The ... expected to reach USD 1.83 billion by 2024, ... Research, Inc. Technological proliferation and increasing demand in ... expected to drive the market growth. ... The development of advanced multimodal techniques for ...
(Date:6/3/2016)... 2016 Das DOTM ... Nepal hat ein 44 Millionen ... Kennzeichen, einschließlich Personalisierung, Registrierung und IT-Infrastruktur, an ... und Implementierung von Identitätsmanagementlösungen. Zahlreiche renommierte internationale ... teilgenommen, aber Decatur wurde als konformste und ...
(Date:5/24/2016)... facilitates superior patient care by providing unparalleled technology to leaders of the medical imaging ... product recently added to the range of products distributed by Ampronix. Photo ... ... ... News ...
Breaking Biology News(10 mins):
(Date:6/24/2016)... ... , ... Researchers at the Universita Politecnica delle Marche in Ancona combed medical ... mesothelioma. Their findings are the subject of a new article on the Surviving Mesothelioma ... in the blood, lung fluid or tissue of mesothelioma patients that can help point ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... (PRWEB) , ... June 23, 2016 , ... ... is pleased to announce the launch of their brand, UP4™ Probiotics, into Target ... over 35 years, is proud to add Target to its list of well-respected ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... June 23, 2016 /PRNewswire/ - FACIT has announced ... biotechnology company, Propellon Therapeutics Inc. ("Propellon" ... commercialization of a portfolio of first-in-class WDR5 inhibitors ... such as WDR5 represent an exciting class of ... precision medicine for cancer patients. Substantial advances have ...
(Date:6/23/2016)... , June 23, 2016 Houston ... with the Cy-Fair Sports Association to serve as ... the agreement, Houston Methodist Willowbrook will provide sponsorship ... and connectivity with association coaches, volunteers, athletes and ... with the Cy-Fair Sports Association and to bring ...
Breaking Biology Technology: