A study published in the European Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology and Reproductive Biology titled “Effects of Omega-3 Fatty Acids in Prevention of Early Preterm Delivery: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Randomized Studies,” found omega-3 supplement consumption was associated with a 58 percent decrease in the likelihood of early preterm birth (babies born before 34 weeks) and a 17 percent decrease in any preterm delivery (babies born before 37 weeks). In addition, the data shows a longer gestation period and higher average infant birth weight. Developing infants must obtain vital nutrients, like omega-3s, through the placenta during pregnancy and from breast milk after birth.
“Overall, it’s important for women who are pregnant or planning to become pregnant to consume the World Health Organization’s recommendation of 200 mg per day of DHA,” said University of Kansas Medical Center AJ Rice Professor of Nutrition Dr. Susan Carlson, whose lab has conducted several studies of omega-3 fatty acid supplementation of pregnant women. “Women can achieve the suggested through a combination of diet and omega-3 supplements.”