Prenatal Fish Oil Supplements Reduce Asthma Risk
According to a small study, children born to mothers who take fish oil supplements during pregnancy have a lower risk of developing asthma. The study showed fish oil supplements can reduce the risk for asthma and persistent wheezing 31 percent, overall.
For the study, 736 pregnant women between 22 and 26 weeks' gestation received either 2.4 grams of fish oil or a placebo (olive oil) per day. Their 695 offspring were then evaluated until the age of five. During that time, 19.6 percent of the children were diagnosed with asthma. In expectant mothers with lower levels of omega-3 fatty acids like EPA and DHA, fish oil supplements produced the greatest effect—a reduced risk for childhood asthma of 54 percent.
Fish oil supplements during pregnancy also were linked to a lower risk for respiratory infections during early childhood. However, the study showed no difference in the risk for asthma exacerbations, eczema, or allergic sensitization in infancy between the two groups.
Image Credit: Thinkstock