Randomised controlled trial of effect of fish-oil supplementation on pregnancy duration

Institute of Epidemiology and Social Medicine, University of Aarhus, Denmark.
The Lancet (Impact Factor: 45.22). 05/1992; 339(8800):1003-7. DOI: 10.1016/0140-6736(92)90533-9
Source: PubMed


The high birthweights and long duration of pregnancy in the Faroe Islands led us to suggest that a high intake of marine-fat-derived n-3 fatty acids might prolong pregnancy by shifting the balance of production of prostaglandins involved in parturition. We have compared the effects on pregnancy duration, birthweight, and birth length of a fish-oil supplement, a control olive-oil supplement, and no supplementation. 533 healthy Danish women in week 30 of pregnancy were randomly assigned in a ratio of 2/1/1 to fish oil (four 1 g Pikasol capsules [containing 2.7 g n-3 fatty acids] per day), olive oil (four 1 g capsules per day), or no supplement. The three groups differed in mean length of gestation (p = 0.006), which was highest in the fish-oil group and lowest in the olive-oil group; the result was similar when the analysis was restricted to women with an estimate of gestation length based on early ultrasound findings (443 women). Pregnancies in the fish-oil group were on average 4.0 (95% confidence interval 1.5-6.4) days longer than those in the olive-oil group; the difference in birthweight was 107 (1-214) g. The effect of supplementation on length of gestation was influenced by intake of fish and of fish oil: the difference between fish-oil and other groups was increased by a low fish intake at baseline. Fish-oil supplementation in the third trimester seems to prolong pregnancy without detrimental effects on the growth of the fetus or on the course of labour.

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    • "It is clear that although fish oil has no serious toxicity, minor adverse events (AEs) such as dysgeusia, flatulence, pyrosis, halitosis, belching, and abdominal discomfort are common and may limit compliance [11] [12]. Enteric coating of the capsules containing the fish oil may help to minimise upper gastrointestinal effects. "
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    ABSTRACT: Supplementation with n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFAs) may be beneficial for patients with inflammatory bowel diseases (IBD). In this study we analyzed the pharmacokinetic profile of eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), as the free fatty acid (FFA), in an enteric-coated preparation, in 10 ulcerative colitis (UC) and 10 Crohn's disease (CD) patients and 15 healthy volunteers (HV). Subjects received 2 g daily of EPA-FFA for 8 weeks. Plasma phospholipid and red blood cell (RBC) membrane fatty acid content were measured by gas chromatography-mass spectrometry. There was a rapid incorporation of EPA into plasma phospholipids by 2 weeks and a slower, but highly consistent, incorporation into RBC membranes (4% total fatty acid content; coefficient of variation 10-16%). There was a concomitant reduction in relative n-6 PUFA content. Elongation and desaturation of EPA into docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) via docosapentaenoic acid (DPA) were apparent and DHA content also increased in membranes. EPA-FFA is well tolerated and no difference in the pharmacokinetic profile of n-3 PUFA incorporation was detected between IBD patients and HV. Our data support the concept that EPA can be considered the "universal donor" with respect to key n-3 PUFAs and that this enteric-coated formulation allows long term treatment with a high level of compliance.
    09/2015; 2015:360825. DOI:10.1155/2015/360825
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    • "The pregnancy period was also found to be shorter in mothers with higher trans fatty acid level in the infant's blood. n-3 fatty acids from fish oils prolonged pregnancy (Olsen et al. 1992) while trans fatty acids appear to shorten it. n-3 fatty acids inhibit the contraction in uterine cells by virtue of an effect on the ion channels of these cells, thus prolonging pregnancy. "
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    ABSTRACT: Trans fatty acids have the presence of one or more double bonds in the trans configuration instead of the usual cis configuration. They are desired by Vanaspati industry as they impart firmness to margarines and plasticity as well as emulsion stability to shortenings. Research has proved the direct connection of trans fatty acids with cardiovascular diseases, breast cancer, shortening of pregnancy period, risks of preeclampsia, disorders of nervous system and vision in infants, colon cancer, diabetes, obesity and allergy. In light of these new findings trans fatty intake should be zero and new technology of hydrogenation of oils is to be developed which produce zero trans fatty acids at the same time preserve the desirable properties contributed by trans fatty acids to the hydrogenated oils. Presently in India there is no system to monitor and regulate the amount of trans fats in processed foods and hence a stringent food law is immediately required.
    Journal of Food Science and Technology -Mysore- 06/2014; 48(5):534-41. DOI:10.1007/s13197-010-0225-8 · 2.20 Impact Factor
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    • "A number of studies have examined the role of individual foods and nutrients with respect to their possible effect on risk of preterm birth, but few factors seems to have been confirmed in randomized controlled trials (RCT). One such factor may be the long-chain marine n-3 fatty acids [25], [26], which in three recent trials have been consistently found to be able to prolong gestation or reduce early or very early preterm birth [27]–[29]. A RCT in Oslo found that if Norwegian women shifted to a Mediterranean type diet that promoted fish intake, the preterm rate fell [19]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Dietary patterns better reflect eating habits as opposed to single dietary components. However, the use of dietary pattern analysis in nutritional epidemiology has been hampered by the complexity of interpreting and presenting multidimensional dietary data. This study extracts and visualizes dietary patterns from self-reported dietary data collected in mid-pregnancy (25th week of gestation) from nearly 60,000 mother-child pairs part of a prospective, longitudinal cohort (Danish National Birth Cohort) and further examines their associations with spontaneous and induced preterm birth (gestational age<259 days (<37 weeks)). A total of seven dietary patterns were extracted by principal component analysis, characterized and visualized by color-coded spider plots, and referred to as: Vegetables/Prudent, Alcohol, Western, Nordic, Seafood, Candy and Rice/Pasta/Poultry. A consistent dose-response association with preterm birth was only observed for Western diet with an odds ratio of 1.30 (95% CI: 1.13, 1.49) comparing the highest to the lowest quintile. This association was primarily driven by induced preterm deliveries (odds ratio = 1.66, 95% CI: 1.30, 2.11, comparing the highest to the lowest quintile) while the corresponding odds ratio for spontaneous preterm deliveries was more modest (odds ratio = 1.18, 95% CI: 0.99, 1.39). All based on adjusted analyses. In conclusion, this study presented a simple and novel framework for visualizing correlation structures between overall consumption of foods group and their relation to nutrient intake and maternal characteristics. Our results suggest that Western-type diet, high in meat and fats and low in fruits and vegetables, is associated with increased odds of induced preterm birth.
    PLoS ONE 04/2014; 9(4):e93644. DOI:10.1371/journal.pone.0093644 · 3.23 Impact Factor
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