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Take a deep breath. When pregnant moms take omega-3s, their kids breathe better.

by Barlean's on July 07, 2017

Pregnant Moms and Omega-3s.jpeg

Pregnant? Getting enough omega-3 fatty acids may be one of the best things you can do for your baby. 

 

Research has shown that when moms take omega-3 fatty acids during pregnancy and breastfeeding, their babies immune systems get a boost and their linguistic skills and fine motor skills develop better than their peers. And now, there’s evidence that kids whose mamas supplement with omega-3s during pregnancy also enjoy better respiratory health. [1] 

 

The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine last winter, followed 736 Danish women and their children. The researchers found that when women took omega-3 supplements in the last trimester of their pregnancies, their children were less likely to experience breathing difficulties in the first five years of their lives than when mothers took a placebo of olive oil.*  

 

But there’s a catch: The amount of omega-3s the women took was 2.4 grams a day — 15-20 times more than what most people get from diet alone. Therefore, supplementation could prove to be essential. Dr. Richard Phipps, professor of Environmental Medicine at Rochester Medical Center, stresses that quality is important when it comes to choosing fish oil: “You really need high-quality, standardized material that’s been processed and stored correctly” to get good results, both in the lab and in real life. [2] 

 

In an ironic twist, another study recently found some remedies targeted at breathing difficulties can block omega-3s’ breathing benefits.iii This underlines the importance of laying the groundwork for good respiratory health ahead of time, before problems arise. 

 

Eating a diet rich in omega-3s from sources such as fatty fish, walnuts, and flaxseed while pregnant can benefit your health as well as your baby’s. But to get closer to achieving the levels used in the study, take a fish or flaxseed oilsupplement. Just remember, not all fish oil is the same so take a high-quality supplement! 

  

* This statement has not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, cure, treat, or prevent any disease. 

  

References 

[1] Bisgaard H, et al. N Engl J Med. 2016 Dec 29;375(26):2530-9.

[2] Chu W. Nutraingredients. 2017 Feb 10. http://www.nutraingredients.com/Research/Fish-oil-asthma-benefits-may-be-blocked-by-medication

[3] Kim N. et al. JCI Insight. 2017 Feb 9;2(3): e88588

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