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Excessive Fructose Consumption during Pregnancy Adversely Impacts Metabolism of Offspring, Study Suggests

Sep, 2020

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According to a research study by the researchers of the University of Otago, Wellington have suggested that high level of fructose consumption during pregnancy can result in substantial changes in metabolic function in the mother and milk composition and might change the metabolism of their offspring. The research study involved guinea pigs.

Moreover, researchers observed that excessive consumption of fructose by female guinea pigs resulted in major and constant changes in the free fatty acids circulating in the blood of their offspring, despite offspring did not consume any fructose by themselves.

Erin Smith, First author stated, “Previous research has shown poor quality nutrition during pregnancy can predispose offspring to long-term consequences, including the development of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease later in life. However, there has been a lack of data examining the impact of increased fructose intake before and during pregnancy and subsequent adverse effects on lactation, foetal development and offspring metabolic function.”

In this research study, researchers involved two experimental groups of guinea pigs, where one group were fed a control diet and other group were fed with fructose diet prior to and during pregnancy. Fructose group were provided with additional fructose water to imitate increased sugar-sweetened beverage intake. This was implemented 60 days prior to mating and until the delivery. Later researchers observed that guinea pigs with fructose diet exhibited significant changes on their metabolism and free fatty acid content of their milk. Researchers also noted that respective offspring from fructose group exhibited a unique pattern of increased free fatty acids and altered lipid metabolism that sustained during the early life.

Researchers suggested that high level of circulating free fatty acids fuels the risk of obesity, insulin resistance, type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease.

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