Eating sugar during pregnancy increases children's risk of asthma
In general, people should be more reluctant to consume sugar. Researchers now found that women should use sugar sparingly during pregnancy. The increased sugar intake of expectant mothers can lead to asthma in their children.
The scientists at Queen Mary University of London found in their recent study that if mothers have an increased sugar intake during pregnancy, it increases the likelihood of their children developing asthma. The physicians published the results of their study in the journal "European Respiratory Journal".During pregnancy expectant mothers should avoid increased intake of sugar. This can otherwise lead to health problems, allergies and asthma in the children of women. (Image: Sebastian Studio / fotolia.com)
Physicians are investigating nearly 9,000 mothers and their children for their study
Women should be careful with sugar during pregnancy. Increased consumption during this period may increase the likelihood of childhood asthma, researchers say. For their study, the experts examined nearly 9,000 mothers and their children. They used data from a world-leading birth cohort study called Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children (ALSPAC).
Researchers are studying the rates of allergies and allergic asthma
For the cohort study, women were recruited who were pregnant in the early 1990s. The children of these women have been medically monitored ever since. The scientists investigated the associations between maternal intake of sugars in pregnancy and the incidence of allergies and asthma among children at the age of seven.
Strong associations of sugar intake with allergies and allergic asthma have been noted
While there was little evidence of a link between free sugar intake during pregnancy and the development of non-allergic asthma, strong associations with allergies and allergic asthma were found, the experts explain.
What causes the increased sugar consumption?
When comparing the twenty percent of the mothers with the highest sugar intake and the twenty percent with the lowest sugar intake, it became apparent that there was an increased risk of 38 percent for the development of allergies in the offspring, the researchers say. In addition, increased sugar intake increased the risk of allergic reactions to two or more allergens by 73 percent and the likelihood of allergic asthma was 101 percent higher, say the authors.
Pregnant women should avoid excessive consumption of sugar
The research team found no link to eczema or hay fever. Based on the observations, it is not possible to say whether a high intake of sugar in pregnancy is definitely the cause of allergies and allergic asthma in their offspring, explains author Professor Seif Shaheen. Given the extremely high levels of sugar consumption in Western countries, we will certainly have to investigate this hypothesis with some urgency, the researchers say. In the meantime, they recommend that pregnant women follow current guidelines and avoid excessive sugar consumption.
Causes fructose to the health problems?
A relationship between sugar and the development of asthma could be explained by the high intake of fructose, which then triggers an immune response. This can lead to inflammation in the development of the lungs, explain the scientists. Several factors were taken into account, which also influence the health of the offspring. These included, for example, social factors and various aspects of maternal nutrition.
Sugar intake of offspring in early childhood does not affect results
Most importantly, the early childhood intake of sugar did not show any association with the results of the analysis, the researchers emphasize. A randomized controlled trial is now required to definitively validate the causality of current outcomes, the authors add. (As)