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Results Table 2 shows the Recommended Dietary Allowances that have now been established for omega-3 fatty acids (USDA).
Table 2 shows the Recommended Dietary Allowances that have now been established for omega-3 fatty acids (USDA).
In a double-blind, placebo controlled, and random trial case study (Judge, 2007), pregnant women consumed either cereal bars that contained DHA (300 mg DHA/92-kcal) or a placebo bar to test the effects DHA had on the woman and fetus. On average, five cereal bars were consumed a week. After 9 months post birth, the newly born infants were tested on their motion, reaction and skill performance. In this case the test had showed benefits for problem solving but not recognition memory for infants of the mothers who did consume cereal bars containing DHA during their pregnancy.
Another case study was done at Rikshospitalet University Hospital and Baerum Central Hospital in Oslo, Norway on first year mothers and their infants. A sample of 341 mothers had been taking DHA supplements during their pregnancy. All mothers of the infants were invited to schedule appointments for cognitive assessments on the infants. The ages of the infants being tested ranged from 6 to 9 months. Mothers were invited to have their infants tested, 262 mothers accepted the invite and participated in the study. A random sample of 135 infants was taken from the 262 population to undergo another assessment. Kaufman Assessment Battery for Children tested the intelligence levels of the now toddlers, at age four. Out of the 135 sample, another random sample of 90 toddlers followed through with another assessment. Six did not complete the test. [WHAT WAS THE RESULT?] In another study, the Kaufman assessors looked at the different DHA levels in the breastfeeding mothers. During pregnancy, half of the mothers were given cod liver oil supplements whereas the remaining mothers were given placebo oil supplements. The result was that the mothers who were given cod liver oil supplements showed better data [UNCLEAR] versus the mothers who were given placebo oil supplements. Mental processing scores showed that cod liver oil was more beneficial for the children of mothers who consumed DHA during their pregnancy. (Helland, 2003).
Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an omega-3 fatty acid that is found in blue green algae. Fish consume this fatty acid that provides a 22 carbon long chain of atoms. This long chain is important in healthy brain development and is essential to reduce unnecessary inflammation. In contrast, omega-6 fatty acids result from consuming meat, which increases inflammation. Until modern times, the dietary ratio was 1:2 omega-3 to omega-6 fatty acids. However, today’s ratio is 1:20 in the majority of people’s diets. My hypothesis is that fish oil consumption during pregnancy can have great benefits for the development of the children. For my methods, I researched peer reviewed articles from the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and the Journal of Nutrition. The studies have shown that pregnant and lactating women who took in 1 g of fish oil (300 mg DHA) on a daily basis had children who showed significant benefits.
Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) is an omega-3 fatty acid found in blue green algae, fish and fish oil. Fish oil also contains another omega-3, eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA). EPA has a 20-carbon long chain. DHA creates a 22-carbon long chain that is vital in healthy brain development and essential to preventing inflammation. It is reported in the media that DHA and EPA together are beneficial for brain and retinal growth. Other benefits of DHA and EPA are prevention and management of cardiovascular disease and chronic disorders. Another type of omega-3 fatty acids is linolenic acid (ALA), which derives from plants, such as edible greens. When consumed by pregnant women, consuming omega-3s, especially DHA, are reported to result in a healthy fetus. My
Hypothesis is that I can find peer-reviewed
articles to support these claims.
In researching the benefits of DHA, I found that the fatty acid can be beneficial for both pregnant women and lactating women with a fetus. I have gathered information from peer-reviewed scholarly articles and case studies that were done by the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition and the Journal of Nutrition.
Eicosapentaenoic Acid (EPA) Structure
According to the articles and case studies that I have reviewed, the given information has shown that DHA consumption can be very beneficial. It is noteworthy that the requirement for omega-3 fatty acids was not recognized until after 2000. Given the benefit for infant brain development, this nutritional requirement is likely to change future generations. DHA is available to consumers in convenience and vitamin stores, online or pharmacies. Purified DHA is sold in a tablet, but it can be purchased as fish oil tablets that contain DHA and are less expensive.
Helland, Ingrid B., Lars Smith, Kristin Saarem, Ola D. Saugstad, and Christian A. "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): E39(2003) <http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/reprint/111/1/e39>.
Holub, Dr. Bruce. "Introduction to Omega-3 | Overview." DHA/EPA Omega-3 Institute. DHA/EPA Omega-3 Institute, 2006-2010. Web. 29 Oct. 2010. <http://www.dhaomega3.org/Overview/Introduction-to-Omega-3>.
Judge, Michelle P., Ofer Harel, and Carol J. Lammi-Keefe. "Maternal Consumption of a Docosahexaenoic Acid-containing Functional Food during Pregnancy: Benefit for Infant Performance on Problem-solving but Not on Recognition Memory Tasks at Age 9 Mo” AJCN 85: 1572 (2010) Web. 29 Oct. 2010. <http://www.ajcn.org/cgi/reprint/85/6/1572>.
USDA, National Agricultural Library, Accessed Nov4, 2010, http://fnic.nal.usda.gov/nal_display/index.php?info_center=4&tax_level=3&tax_subject=256&topic_id=1342&level3_id=5140