Warning messageThis content is filtered. APPPAH membership is required for full access to journal articles.
This paper presents an overview of the effects of omega-3 fatty acids on the duration of pregnancy, incidence of pregnancy-induced hypertension, fetal growth and development, including birth weight, neurocognitive and visual development in the infant, and postpartum depression in the mother. A brief introduction to the role of nutrition on the outcome of pregnancy provides a context for the review of the literature which follows. Much of the research is preliminary and includes epidemiological, animal, and human studies. The clinical applications of omega-3 fatty acid supplementation during pregnancy and breastfeeding are currently controversial due to mixed findings in the research. However, this nutritional factor warrants further study because of the clear physiological basis, strong epidemiological evidence, and positive clinical outcomes and because of the potential for improved physical and behavioral health.
Anderson, J.W., Johnstone, B.M., & Remley, D.T. (1999). Breastfeeding and cognitive development: A meta-analysis. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 70(4), 525-553.
Birch, E.E., Garfield, S., Hoflman, D.R., Uauy, R., & Birch, D.G. (2000). A randomized controlled trial of early dietary supply of long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids and mental development in term infants. Developmental Medicine & Child Neurology, 42(3), 174-181.
Browne, J.C., Scott, K.M., & Silvers, K.M. (2006). Fish consumption and pregnancy and omega-3 status after birth are not associated with postnatal depression. Journal of Affective Disorders, 90(2-3), 131-139.
Connor, W.E., & Neuringer, M. (1988). The effects of n-3 fatty acid deficiency and repletion upon the fatty acid composition and function of the brain and retina. Progress in Clinical Biological Research, 282, 275-294.
de la Pressa, O.S., & Innis, S.M. (1999). Docosahexaenoic and arachidonic acid prevent a decrease in dopaminergic and seotoninergic neurotransmitters in frontal cortex caused by a linoleic and alpha-linolenic acid deficient diet in formula-fed piglets. Journal of Nutrition, 129(11), 2088-2093.
Freeman, M.P. (2006). Omega-3 fatty acids and perinatal depression: a review of the literature and recommendations for future research. Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes, and Essential Fatty Acids, 75(4-5), 291-297.
Greenberg, J.A., Bell, S.J & Van Ausdal, W. (2008). Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation during pregnancy Reviews in Obstetrics & Gynecology, 1(4), 162-169.
Helland, I.B., Smith, I., Saarem, K. Saugstad, O.D., & Drevon, C.A. (2003). Maternal supplementation with very-long-chain n-3 fatty acids during pregnancy and lactation augments children's IQ at 4 years of age. Pediatrics, 111(1), 39-44.
Hibbeln, J.R. (2002). Seafood consumption, the DHA content of mothers' milk and prevalence rates of postpartum depression: A cross-national ecological analysis. Journal of Affective Disorders, 69(1-3), 15-29.
Hughner, R.S., Maher, J.K. & Childs, N.M. (2008). Review of food policy and consumer issues of mercury in fish. Journal of the American College of Nutrition, 27(2), 185-194.
Klier, C.M. (2006). Mother-infant bonding disorders in patients with postnatal depression: The Postpartum Bonding Questionnaire in clinical practice. Archives of Women's Mental Health, 9(5), 289-291.
Llorente, A.M., Jensen, C.L., Voight, R.G., Fraley, J.K., Berretta, M.C., & Hierd, W.C., (2003). Effect of maternal docosahexaienoic acid supplementation on postpartum depression and information processing. American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, 188(5), 1348-1353.
Lumey, L.H., Stein, A.D., Kahn, H.S., van der Pal-de Bruin, K.M., Blauw, G.J., Zybert, P.A., & Susser, E.S. (2007). Cohort Profile: The Dutch Hunder Winter families study. Intenational Journal of Epidemiology, 36(6), 1196-1204
Marangell, L.B., Martinez, J.M., Zboyan, H.A., Chong, H., & Puryear, L.J. (2004). Omega-3 fatty acids for the prevention of postpartum depression: Negative data from a preliminary, open-label pilot study. Depression and Anxiety, 19(1), 20-23.
Martinez, M. (1992). Tissue levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids during early human development. Journal of Pediatrics, 120(4), 129-138.
Mills, J.L., DerSimonian, R., Raymond, E., Morrow, J.D., Roberts, L.J., Clemens, J.D., Levine, R.J. (1999). Prostacyclin and thromboxane changes predating clinical onset of preeclampsia: A multicenter prospective study. Journal of the American Medical Association, 282(4), 356-362.
NHLBI (National High Blood Pressure Education Program Working Group). (2000). Working group report on high blood pressure in pregnancy. Washington, D.C. Publication No. 00-3029.
Norwitz, E.R., Robinson, J.N., & Challis, J.R. (1999). The control of labor. New England Journal of Medicine, 341(Supp 9), 660-666.
Odent, M. (2006). Hypothesis: Preeclampsia as a Maternal-Fetal Conflict. Journal of Prenatal and Perinatal Psychology & Health, 20(4), 315-324.
Olsen, S.F. (1993). Consumption of marine n-3 fatty acids during pregnancy as a possible determinant of birth weight. Epidemiological Reviews, 15(2), 399-413.
Otto, S.J., deGroot, R.H., & Hornstra, G. (2003). Increased risk of postpartum depressive symptoms is associated with slower normalization after pregnancy of the functional docosahexaenoic acid status. Prostaglandins, Leukotrienes, and Essential Fatty Acids, 69(4), 237-243.
Popeski, D., Ebbeling, L.R., Brown, P.B., Hornstra, G., & Gerrard, J.M. (1991). Blood pressure during pregnancy in Canadian Inuit: Community differences related to diet. Canadian Medical Association Journal, 145(5), 445-454.
Reece, M.S., McGregor, J.A., Allen, K.G., & Harris, M.A. (1997). Maternal and perinatal long-chain fatty acids: possible roles in preterm birth. American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology, 176(4), 907-914.
Richardson, A.J., & Montgomery, P. (2005). The Oxford-Durham study: a randomized, controlled trial of dietary supplementation with fatty acids in children with developmental coordination disorder. Pediatrics, 115(5), 1360-1366.
Saldeen, P., & Saldeen, T. (2004). Women and omega-3 fatty acids. Obstetrics & Gynecology Survey, 59(10), 722-730.
Simonopoulos, A.P. (2002). The importance of the ratio of omega-6/omega-3 essential fatty acids. Biomedicine & Pharmacotherapy, 56(8), 365-379.
Stevens, L.J., Zentall, S.S., Deck, J.L., Abate, M.L., Watkins, B.A., Lipp, S.R., & Burgess, J.R. (1995). Essential fatty acid metabolism in boys with attention-defecit hyperactivity disorder. American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 62(4), 761-768.
Verny, T. (2006). Lecture: The Prenatal Experience. Santa Barbara Graduate Institute.
To speak with a representative about our products and services or for technology inquiries, please call 1-720-490-5612.