A collaborative research team consisting of Ehime University, the University of Tokyo, and Ryukyu University has published research results showing that intake of vegetables, fruits, and vitamin C during pregnancy is preventive for behavioral problems in the born child.

 To date, no epidemiological studies have investigated the association between the intake of antioxidants such as vegetables, fruits and vitamin C during pregnancy and the behavioral problems of the offspring.Therefore, the joint research team utilized 1199 pairs of maternal and child data from the "Kyushu-Okinawa Maternal and Child Health Study," which followed up on mothers and children born during pregnancy.Pregnant women's nutrition data obtained from the Pregnant Dietary History Questionnaire and the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ: Child Strength and Difficulty Questionnaire) parent rating form conducted for parents in a 5-year-old follow-up survey. In addition, we investigated the association between pregnancy vegetable, fruit, and antioxidant intake and behavioral problems in children at age 5.

 As a result, low emotional, behavioral, hyperactive and prosocial behaviors (behaviors that try to help and help others without expecting rewards) in 5-year-olds and the vegetables and fruits that the mother ingested during pregnancy. , The association with vitamin C was found as follows.

Total vegetable intake and green-yellow vegetable intake are associated with reduced risk of low prosocial behavior
・ Vegetable intake other than green and yellow vegetables is associated with hyperactivity problem and reduced risk of low prosocial behavior
Higher intake of fruits, especially apples, is associated with a lower risk of hyperactivity problems
・ The higher the intake of citrus, the lower the risk of emotional problems, behavioral problems and hyperactivity problems.
Higher vitamin C intake is associated with lower risk of behavioral problems, hyperactivity problems and lower prosocial behavior

 The results of this study suggest that intake of vegetables, fruits (especially apples and citrus fruits) and vitamin C during pregnancy may be prophylactic to behavioral problems in the offspring.Although it is necessary to accumulate further research data, it can be said that this is a research result showing the possibility of preventing behavioral problems in children by changing eating habits during pregnancy.

Paper information:[Nutrition] Maternal consumption of vegetables, fruit, and antioxidants during pregnancy and risk of childhood behavioral problems

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