SALT LAKE CITY, Jan. 28, 2016 /PRNewswire/ -- A study published in the European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology titled "Effects of Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Prevention of Early Preterm Delivery: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Studies," found omega-3 supplement consumption was associated with a 58 percent decrease in the likelihood of early preterm birth (babies born before 34 weeks) and a 17 percent decrease in any preterm delivery (babies born before 37 weeks). In addition, the data shows a longer gestation period and higher average infant birth weight.
"This research underscores much of what we already knew about the importance of EPA and DHA for infant development, and it builds on research that strongly suggests these omega-3s are a key to health throughout life," said Dr. Harry Rice, vice president of regulatory and scientific affairs for the Global Organization for EPA and DHA Omega-3s (GOED). "Experts know that carrying a baby full-term strongly increases the likelihood of a healthy baby post-delivery, which means omega-3 consumption is crucial for pregnant women."
Developing infants must obtain vital nutrients, like omega-3s, through the placenta during pregnancy and from breast milk after birth. Omega-3s are also vital for infant brain development, which is supported by two different studies published this month:
- American Journal of Epidemiology: Another study titled, "Maternal Consumption of Seafood in Pregnancy and Child Neuropsychological Development: A Longitudinal Study Based on a Population With High Consumption Levels," concluded that consumption of fatty fish during pregnancy presents moderate child neuropsychological benefits, including improvements in cognitive functioning and some protection from autism-spectrum traits.
- Stem Cells: A third study titled, "Maternal Dietary Imbalance Between Omega-6 and Omega-3 Polyunsaturated Fatty Acids Impairs Neocortical Development Via Epoxy Metabolites," showed evidence that excess consumption of omega-6 fatty acids (found in vegetable oils), combined with insufficient intake of omega-3s, causes abnormal brain development that can have long-lasting effects on the offspring's mental state.
"Overall, it's important for women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant to consume the World Health Organization's recommendation of 200 mg per day of DHA," said University of Kansas Medical Center AJ Rice Professor of Nutrition Dr. Susan Carlson, whose lab has conducted several studies of omega-3 fatty acid supplementation of pregnant women. "Women can achieve the suggested through a combination of diet and omega-3 supplements."
For more information about the health benefits and best sources of EPA and DHA omega-3s, and to test omega-3 levels, visit AlwaysOmega3s.com.
GOED is an association of the world's finest processors, refiners, manufacturers, distributors, marketers, retailers and supporters of products containing Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) and Docosahexaenoic Acid (DHA) omega-3 fatty acids. The organization's objectives are to educate consumers about the health benefits of EPA/DHA, and work with government groups, the healthcare community and the industry, while setting high standards for its business sector. GOED and its members are committed to personal integrity, ethical corporate behavior, public safety and quality assurance. For more information, visit www.goedomega3.com.
SOURCE Global Organization for EPA and DHA Omega-3s