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Taking fish oil in pregnancy may reduce child’s risk of diabetes by improving their response to insulin

Fish oil

Taking fish oil in pregnancy may reduce a child’s risk of diabetes, new research suggests. Giving overweight pregnant rats fresh fish oil improves their offspring’s response to insulin, a study found.

Previous research has demonstrated insulin sensitivity is protective against diabetes. Lead author Dr. Ben Albert from the University of Auckland, said: “This is exciting because it raises the question: if overweight women take fresh fish oil in pregnancy, will it lower the risk of their children later developing diabetes?”

Yet, researchers advise women eat more oily fish rather than taking fish oil as some supplements are of dubious quality.

Researchers from the University of Auckland fed pregnant rats a high-fat or standard diet. Half of the rats fed both types of diets were also given fresh fish oil.

Results revealed that among those fed the high-fat diet, fish oil improved the rats’ offsprings’ insulin sensitivity. Previous research has demonstrated insulin sensitivity is protective against diabetes.

Albert said: “This is exciting because it raises the question: if overweight women take fresh fish oil in pregnancy, will it lower the risk of their children later developing diabetes?”

The findings were published in the journal Scientific Reports.

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