Taking Supplements While Pregnant or Breastfeeding Can Reduce the Risk of Allergy in Kids?
According to a recent research, pregnant or breastfeeding women can help to reduce their child’s risk for certain allergies, such as eczema or egg allergy, by taking fish oil and probiotic supplements. The link between the diet and supplements during pregnancy and breastfeeding and the risk of allergy in kids was analyzed by the U.K. researchers, based on more than 400 studies. About one eighth part of these studies looked at the effects of taking fish oil or probiotic supplements in more than 20,000 women.
The research found that the risk of developing an allergy to egg protein by age 1 was reduced by almost thirty percent in kids, whose mothers were taking a fish oil supplement every day starting at 20 weeks of pregnancy and during the first 4 months of breastfeeding.
Besides, based on the report, taking a probiotic supplement daily, either in the form of a capsule, powder or drink, at around 36-38 weeks of pregnancy, as well as during up to 6 months of breastfeeding helped women to decrease their children’s risk for eczema (also known as atopic dermatitis) by 22 percent. However, the report doesn’t point to any specific type of probiotics or an exact dose.
The research also reported that the risk of allergy in children wasn’t anyhow affected by the avoidance of common food allergy triggers like dairy, nuts, and eggs during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Though more and larger studies are required to confirm the results, the authors of the research believe that these findings might be included in the health guidelines for pregnant women in the future.
Fish oil is a nutrient that provides a lot of health benefits due to Omega-3 fatty acids contained in it. Omega-3 fatty acids are considered by many experts to be important for the development of a baby’s brain and eyes. If you like fish, eating fatty fish (e.g. salmon, sardines or tuna) once or twice a week can be enough to get enough of the nutrient. Otherwise, there are various Omega-3 supplements available on the market. If you decide to take a fish oil supplement, choose the one containing filtered oil to avoid toxins.
Probiotics are also commonly known as “friendly bacteria”. They can be found in some foods (e.g. yogurt), as well as in dietary supplements. Although probiotics are usually safe for pregnant and breastfeeding women, you are always better off checking with your doctor before taking any medications or supplements. In addition, you should remember that probiotic-containing supplements are not regulated by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration, meaning the content of the supplements may often be unclear.