Can Fish Oil Supplements Improve Pregnancy Outcomes

Researchers wanted to observe the effects that fish oil (FO) had on associated pregnancy outcomes. This was a randomized controlled trial that they published in February 2015. The idea was to compare the overall effects of FO supplementation along with a controlled diet in pregnant women.

The Results

The study period was for a total of 21 days and involved 10,802 pregnant ladies. Dietary FO was associated with the following results:

  • 8-day increase in the gestational age of newborns
  • 22% decreased risk for preterm delivery
  • 10% reduction in the preterm
  • Higher infantile birth weight (avg. 51.23 g)
  • Higher birth length (0.28 cm)
  • Bigger head circumference (0.09 cm)
  • 23% lesser risk of a low birth weight

There was no benefit from FO supplementation with regard to the risk of IUGR or intrauterine growth restriction or with stillbirth.

Scientists concluded that dietary FO during pregnancy showed a reduction in the risk of pre-term delivery and an overall improved size of the babies at birth. They also conclude that fish oil supplementation throughout pregnancy might also prove to be an effective medication for pre-term delivery. Resource

Fish oil supplementation improves pregnancy outcomes and size of the newborn: a meta-analysis of 21 randomized controlled trials.

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