Nutrition is crucial during pregnancy as it supports the growth of foetus and maintain healthy weight of the unborn child. What you eat during pregnancy can go on to impact your child’s cognitive and social development even at the age of 2. A new randomized trial finds that mothers who followed the Mediterranean diet while expecting improved their children’s cognitive, social and emotional development at age 2 compared with children whose mothers did not follow the diet, reports CNN. (Also read: Dengue during pregnancy can turn fatal; know complications, symptoms and prevention tips)
The Mediterranean Diet is a way of eating that promotes consumption of plant-based foods and healthy fats. The diet comprises of vegetables, fruits, beans, lentils, nuts, whole wheat grains, extra virgin olive oil, fish, omega 3 fatty acids. As per studies, the Mediterranean diet can lower your risk of cardiovascular disease and other chronic conditions.
The study included children born to 1,221 high-risk mothers who were part of The Improving Mothers for a Better Prenatal Care Trial Barcelona, a randomized clinical trial conducted between February 2017 and March 2020., as per the report published in CNN. The women were divided into three groups – one group followed Mediterranean diet and given olive oil and walnuts and followed meal plans and recipes prepared by nutritionist. The second group followed eight weeks of pregnancy yoga, meditation and mindfulness group sessions. The third group of women was given standard prenatal care, the report further added.
About 22 per cent of women who received only prenatal care gave birth to babies of low weight, found the research team while the low weight births reduced to 15.6 per cent in women who were given mindfulness classes. In the group of women on Mediterranean diet, such birth rate was just 14 per cent.
The researchers also measured cognitive, social and emotional infant development of these children at the age of 2. They visited around half of the children of the women who participated in the trial and administered the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development, a well-known measure of cognitive, social and emotional infant development.
Upon the cognitive test, it was found there was a 5-point favourable difference between children whose mothers ate a Mediterranean diet and those in the control group who did not
Thus, stress reduction and Mediterranean diet can both make social and emotional development of your child better.
Courtesy – www.hindustantimes.com