Institute of Good Manufacturing Practices India®

(An Autonomous Body Recognized by Ministry of Commerce & Industry, Government of India)

Child weight gain and metabolic risks: Fish oil consumption in pregnancy

The prevalence of childhood overweight and obesity has risen, partly due to environmental exposures during pregnancy, such as consuming n-3 long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids (LCPUFAs) from fatty fish. Observational studies link prenatal LCPUFA intake to lower offspring BMI and better metabolic profiles. A previous trial found increased BMI and body mass among offspring at age six after fish oil supplementation in late pregnancy.

A follow-up study assessed metabolic health at age ten in 736 mother-child pairs. While children in the intervention group had higher BMI and overweight risk, adjusting for maternal factors lessened differences. Although intervention group children had higher lean and fat mass, metabolic outcomes were similar between groups, though metabolic syndrome scores were higher in the intervention group.

Mediation analysis showed no influence of physical activity, diet, or puberty stage on outcomes, with no gender differences. The study suggests that prenatal LCPUFA supplementation may increase BMI and overweight risk at age ten, potentially indicating negative health impacts.