New Zealand, Science News

New Zealand raises alarm over consumption of fish oil in pregnancy

Omega-3 is recommended in pregnancy, but new research suggests care is needed to avoid oxidised fish oil

A group of scientists from the University of Auckland’s Liggins Institute in New Zealand is sounding a warning after new research finding highly oxidised fish oils may be harmful in pregnancy.

Fish oil goes off or ‘oxidises’ very easily. The researchers wanted to find out whether there could be negative health effects from oxidised oils, in particular, whether they could be harmful in pregnancy.

In the newly published trial, fish oils within recommended levels of oxidation, when given at human-relevant doses, did not cause any harm to the offspring.

“This research tells us is that women who are pregnant should avoid highly oxidised fish oil and should do what they can to make sure that the fish oil they take stays unoxidised.

“Around the world, few products on store shelves seem to be oxidised above the levels that we have now shown to be safe in rat pregnancy. But it’s also important to prevent fish oil supplements from going off at home”, said the researchers.

image credit- shutterstock

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