Omega-3 Fats During Pregnancy Provide an Alternative to Anti-Depressant Drugs

Tuesday, July 29, 2008 by: Maryann Marshall
Tags: prenatal nutrition, health news, Natural News

eTrust Pro Certified

Most Viewed Articles
Popular on Facebook
BACK INTO THE CLOSET: Why U.S. reporters are not allowed to write about rainbow events in nations where being gay is still condemned
Depopulation test run? 75% of children who received vaccines in Mexican town now dead or hospitalized
INVESTIGATION: Three days before Dr. Bradstreet was found dead in a river, U.S. govt. agents raided his research facility to seize a breakthrough cancer treatment called GcMAF
A family destroyed: Six-month-old dies after clinic injects baby with 13 vaccines at once without mother's informed consent
Biologist explains how marijuana causes tumor cells to commit suicide
BOMBSHELL: China and America already at war: Tianjin explosion carried out by Pentagon space weapon in retaliation for Yuan currency devaluation... Military helicopters now patrolling Beijing
Companies begin planting microchips under employees' skin
BAM! Chipotle goes 100% non-GMO; flatly rejecting the biotech industry and its toxic food ingredients
ECONOMIC SLAVERY FOR ALL: While we were distracted with the Confederate flag flap, Congress quietly forfeited our entire economic future via fast-track trade authority
McDonald's in global profit free fall as people everywhere increasingly reject chemically-altered toxic fast food
March Against Monsanto explodes globally... World citizens stage massive protests across 38 countries, 428 cities... mainstream media pretends it never happened
SCOTUS same-sex marriage decision may have just legalized the concealed carry of loaded firearms across all 50 states, nullifying gun laws everywhere
Vicious attack on Dr. Oz actually waged by biotech mafia; plot to destroy Oz launched after episode on glyphosate toxicity went viral
Nearly every mass shooting in the last 20 years shares one surprising thing? and it's not guns
Holistic cancer treatment pioneer Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez dies suddenly; patients mourn the loss of a compassionate, innovative doctor who helped thousands heal from cancer
Inuit Elders tell NASA Earth Axis Shifted
Wild eyes and bowl cuts: Why do mass shooters always share the same hair styles and crazed zombie stares?
Genetically white woman now claims self-identify as black: If you can choose your gender, can you also choose your race? What about your species? Can a human claim to be a llama?
(NaturalNews) The demands on a woman's body during pregnancy often leave her feeling depleted, physically and emotionally. Depression is common among pregnant women. Concerns have been raised about possible harm from antidepressants which might affect both mother and child. Mothers-to-be and their health care providers often look for other choices than pharmaceuticals.

Researchers at China Medical University Hospital in Taiwan noted a possible reason why many women experience depression during pregnancy, reports Reuters Health ( . Depression is often associated with lower levels of Omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs).

Dr. Kuan-Pin Su and colleagues presented their findings in the April issue of the Journal of Clinical Psychiatry ( Dr. Su supplemented subjects' diets with 3.4 grams Omega-3 each day. Control subjects received an olive oil derived placebo. At 6 and 8 week follow up testing, the Omega-3 receiving women scored lower on depression measuring scales than the placebo group. These scores indicated less depression. Two thirds of the women consuming the PUFAs showed significant improvement, the study said, compared with 27 per cent of the control group. Many became free from depression altogether.

The best news came when researchers noted the absence of negative effects on either mothers or their newborn babies. A few mothers experienced minor stomach upset the first few days while their systems got used to the new substances.

Many pregnant women are deficient in a variety of nutrients, including Omega-3 PUFAs. In an effort to provide for the baby's needs, a woman may lose 3 percent of her brain mass during the last trimester. This loss is thought to be responsible for postpartum depression. The diminished supply of Omega-3 PUFAs can have far-reaching effects on both mother and baby beyond perinatal and postpartum depression. Deficiencies in these PUFAs can lead to pre-eclampsia, prematurity, and low birth weight babies.

The American Chronicle ( reports that Omega-3s consumed during pregnancy are also beneficial for the baby. EPA and DHA, components of Omega-3 oils, make up nearly 70 percent of the developing baby's brain, nervous system, and the retinal tissue of the eyes. The article summarizes findings presented in the American Journal of Epidemiology ( .

The need for these PUFAs, the article goes on to say, begins even before conception. Omega-3 oils are required to produce healthy and vigorous eggs and sperm.

The Chronicle article suggests salmon and fish oil as good sources for these essential Omega-3 oils. Yet, there are concerns about mercury contamination in fish, points out an article from Reuters Health ( . The solution recommended by the researchers: avoid farm raised fish and large long-lived fish like swordfish and tuna. They also call for lowering levels of environmental contamination with mercury. Over-all these researchers suggest that mothers-to-be should eat at least two servings a week of fish lower in mercury.

According to The World's Healthiest Foods ( Omega oils are best absorbed from whole foods. If you choose to use supplements: "remember that these oils are highly sensitive to damage from heat, light and oxygen. Choose a certified organic product that has been refrigerated and is packaged in a dark brown or green glass jar and be sure to store the product in your refrigerator or freezer."

Nutrition Data ( gives a comprehensive list of food sources for Omega oils. Most of those listed at the top are concentrated oils, fats, and salad dressings, beginning with flax seed oil. Within the top ten, these concentrated oils begin to be interspersed among food sources:

* Whole flax seed appears first among the actual food sources with 22,813 milligrams per 100 grams - far above the others.

* The next highest source from food: chia seeds with 17,552 milligrams per 100 grams.

* Foods following these include English walnuts (9,079) and butternuts (8,719). Black walnuts offer 2,006 and beechnuts contain 1700 milligrams per 100 grams. Toppings of nuts in syrup (2,420) and pecans (1031) are also on the chart.

* Surprisingly high on the list we find familiar spices like clove (4,279), oregano (4,180), marjoram (3,230), and tarragon (2,955). Other spices offering more than 1 gram in 100 grams of mass include: Spearmint (2,792); yellow mustard seed (2,680); basil (1509); saffron (1,248); sage (1,230); rosemary (1076), and bay leaf (1050). Of course, we do not use these in large quantities, but we see how they can add more than flavor to our meals.

* Fish are numerous at the top of this list. Among the fishes we first encounter caviar (6,789) and mackerel (5,134). Finally, at number 58, we come to Atlantic native red sockeye salmon with skin, which has received so much press, weighing in at 2,865 milligrams per hundred grams of fish. These are followed by another variety of mackerel (2,670), shad (2,649), wild Atlantic salmon (2,586; farmed - 2,260; canned - 1,480), herring (2,418 and kippered - 2,365), and sardines (1,480). Note that varieties and sources for the same species of fish can have widely differing amounts of nutrients.

* Among soy foods we find: tofu dried (2,024) and fried (1,346); roasted soybeans (1,694); soy flour (1,458); and raw soybeans (1,330).

* These are the stellar sources which offer more than one percent of their substance as Omega-3 oils. Many other foods are considered good sources, even with a lower density of the nutrient. The World's Healthiest Foods recommends cauliflower, cabbage, kale, collard greens and Brussels sprouts as good sources in addition to many of those listed above.

Pregnancy is a good time to take extra special care of yourself, even if you fall short at other times. Indulge in the sheer delight of sampling the vast variety of nutrient dense foods. Your body - and your baby - will reap abundant benefits.

About the author

Maryann Marshall is a fourth generation herbalist. She taught "Herbs and Your Health" classes for 25 years. Currently she is developing these classes into an online course. See for more information.
Eight years ago, her eldest son suffered a severe brain injury in an auto accident. His journey to wellness continues today. The family struggles through the government and medical labyrinth to assist his healing through prayer, nutrition, herbs, and other natural methods. Maryann is currently writing a book about the accident and its aftermath. You can read it in progress at: .
Her websites can be found at: Also check for the most powerful concentrate of all-natural omega-3's and antioxidants on the planet and for therapeutic grade essential oils.

Follow real-time breaking news headlines on
Prenatal nutrition at
Join over four million monthly readers. Your privacy is protected. Unsubscribe at any time.
comments powered by Disqus
Take Action: Support by linking back to this article from your website

Permalink to this article:

Embed article link: (copy HTML code below):

Reprinting this article:
Non-commercial use OK, cite with clickable link.

Follow Natural News on Facebook, Twitter, Google Plus, and Pinterest

Colloidal Silver

Advertise with NaturalNews...

Support NaturalNews Sponsors:

Advertise with NaturalNews...


Sign up for the FREE Natural News Email Newsletter

Receive breaking news on GMOs, vaccines, fluoride, radiation protection, natural cures, food safety alerts and interviews with the world's top experts on natural health and more.

Join over 7 million monthly readers of, the internet's No. 1 natural health news site. (Source:

Your email address *

Please enter the code you see above*

No Thanks

Already have it and love it!

Natural News supports and helps fund these organizations:

* Required. Once you click submit, we will send you an email asking you to confirm your free registration. Your privacy is assured and your information is kept confidential. You may unsubscribe at anytime.