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Oily fish intake during pregnancy - association with lower hyperactivity but not with higher full-scale IQ in offspring

Gale, CR; Robinson, SM; Godfrey, KM; Law, CM; Schlotz, W; O'Callaghan, FJ; (2008) Oily fish intake during pregnancy - association with lower hyperactivity but not with higher full-scale IQ in offspring. J CHILD PSYCHOL PSYC , 49 (10) 1061 - 1068. 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2008.01908.x.

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Abstract

Background: Long-chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids are thought to be important for fetal neurodevelopment. Animal studies suggest that a deficiency of omega-3 fatty acids may lead to behavioural or cognitive deficits. As oily fish is a major dietary source of omega-3 fatty acids, it is possible that low intake of fish during pregnancy may have adverse effects on the developing fetal brain. Methods:We used the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire and the Wechsler Abbreviated Scale of Intelligence to assess behavioural problems and intelligence in 217 nine-year-old children. The mothers of these children had participated in a study of nutrition during pregnancy during which fish intake was assessed in early and late gestation. Results:Children whose mothers had eaten oily fish in early pregnancy had a reduced risk of hyperactivity compared to those whose mothers did not eat oily fish: OR .34, 95% CI .15 to .78, after adjustment for potential confounding factors. Children whose mothers had eaten fish (whether oily or non-oily) in late pregnancy had a verbal IQ that was 7.55 points higher (95% CI .75 to 14.4) than those whose mothers did not eat fish. There were, however, no significant associations between fish intake in pregnancy and other behavioural problems or full-scale and performance intelligence, after adjustment for potential confounding factors. Conclusions:Although maternal fish intake in pregnancy was associated with hyperactivity scores and verbal IQ in children, in general, how much fish women ate during pregnancy appeared to have little long-term relation with neurodevelopmental outcomes in their child.

Type: Article
Title: Oily fish intake during pregnancy - association with lower hyperactivity but not with higher full-scale IQ in offspring
DOI: 10.1111/j.1469-7610.2008.01908.x
Keywords: Intelligence, behaviour problems, diet, pregnancy, fish intake, hyperactivity, omega-3 fatty acids, nutrition, pre-natal, POLYUNSATURATED FATTY-ACID, DOCOSAHEXAENOIC ACID, COGNITIVE-DEVELOPMENT, CRITICAL PERIODS, RAT-BRAIN, N-3, SUPPLEMENTATION, DEFICIENCY, GROWTH, INFANTS
UCL classification: UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > ICH Developmental Neurosciences Prog
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Pop Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > ICH Pop, Policy and Practice Prog
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/111892
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