A recent study has linked eating high-fat diet in pregnancy with health disorders such as anxiety and depression in children and this will make the Moms-to-be staying away from all such food. The research of the Oregon Health & Science University in an animal model suggested that it changes the development of the endocrine system and the brain of their offspring and puts a long-term impact on its behaviour.
Led by Elinor Sullivan, the study, tested the consequence of a maternal high-fat diet on non-human primates, strongly keeping control over their diet in a way that would be difficult in a human population. It exposed the change of behaviour in the offspring related with decreased development of brain’s central serotonin system. Further, it displayed that at an early age presenting a healthy diet to the offspring failed to reverse the effect.
Previously done observational studies in people associated maternal obesity with a range of neurodevelopmental disorders and mental health in children. The new research revealed it for the first time that a high-fat diet, progressively common in the developed world, caused enduring mental health consequences for the offspring of non-human primates.
The new study recommends that the U.S. obesity epidemic may be commanding transgenerational effects. Senior author Sullivan said “It’s not about accusing the mother.” “It’s all about educating pregnant women regarding the potential risks of a high-fat diet in pregnancy and empowering them and their families to make healthy choices by serving support. We also need to craft public rules that support healthy lifestyles and diets.”
Sullivan and research assistant as well as the first author Jacqueline Thompson said that “they believe the findings avails suggestion that mobilising public resources to provide healthy food and pre- and post-natal care to families of all socioeconomic classes could decrease mental health disorders in the upcoming generations.”