The Frightening Risk of Low-Fat Foods for Pregnant Women

yogurtI don't know about you, but when I was pregnant, the low-fat and fat-free versions of just about anything tasted absolutely wrong to me. Like I was eating some kind of synthetic faux-food. I'd never had a problem with those foods before, but my pregnant body definitely wouldn't settle for less than full-fat. (Even though all the pregnancy books insisted anything but low-fat dairy would result in eventual morbid obesity.)

So I can't say I'm shocked by the recent study linking low-fat yogurt consumption by pregnant women with increased risk of asthma and allergic rhinitis, or hay fever. Even though this study focused only on low-fat yogurt, researchers are looking into the possibility that pregnant women who eat low-fat yogurt tend to eat low-fat versions of everything else, too. And that maybe, just maybe, the missing fat contains some allergy-preventing magic.

I knew it!

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They don't call 'em Essential Fatty Acids for nothin'! Seriously, it's common knowledge that omega-3 intake during pregnancy plays a crucial role in the development of your baby's brain and nervous system. Take the fat out of your food and you're bound to lose the fatty acids.

So don't let yourself be bullied by the low-fat police. If you eat dairy, stick to the full-fat versions or, better yet, full-fat versions from grass-fed cows (they produce higher levels of omega-3s). If you don't eat dairy, there are plenty of other ways to get your EFAs: Fortified eggs, breads, dark leafy greens, flax seed, walnuts ... the list goes on.

What's your favorite omega-3-rich food?

 

Image via Aric Riley/Flickr

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