Effect of Fish Oil as a Supplement During Pregnancy

During pregnancy proper diet is necessary for the development of both physical and mental growth of a child. Particularly the intake of fish and its supplements is too much helpful for the health of the mother and her baby. The fish supplements contain a long chain of unsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFA) which is very important for sufficient development. It has been found that women who are on a higher intake of LCPUFA usually delivers a baby with higher birth weight as compared to those women who are in low intake of LCPUFA.

Omega 3 is the long chain unsaturated fatty acids that are very important for health and growth. However, these are not synthesized in the human body so it is supplemented from the outer source. Researches show that there are two omega 3s, known as EPA and DHA those are beneficial for the body. EPA helps in supporting the immune system, heart, and the inflammatory response. Whereas DHA helps in supporting the eyes, brain and the central nervous system. Hence it is very important for a pregnant as well as lactating women.

Various studies have shown that fish oil supplement in diet during pregnancy helps in developing the adipose (fat) tissues. Some scientists from Bristol University and Copenhagen examined the impact of having fish oil supplements as a diet in pregnancy. After conducting a randomized controlled trial on 736 pregnant and lactating women, Vinding et al., 2018, concluded that there is no such appropriate evidence which shows the existence of an increase in the body mass index. Measurements of head, weight, height, and waist are examined and found that BMI of a baby remains high from birth to an age of 6 years.

The composition of the body was assessed by using dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry (DXA) and was demonstrated that a higher rate of BMI does not indicate a higher percentage of fat in body. However, the intake of fish oil supplements had revealed that there is an increase in the mass of bone and muscles in a baby. The results of the study showed that babies whose mothers had an intake of fish oil supplements during pregnancy had a higher rate of total mass, lean mass, bone mineral content and fat mass as compared to the babies of mothers who had an intake of control oil.

So, it can be said that fish oil supplement is very effective for the mother and her baby as it helps in the growth and development of the baby. The fish oil supplement helps in the growth of lean mass, bone mineral and fat mass of the baby which increases the body mass index up to six years.


  1. https://www.bmj.com/content/362/bmj.k3312
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