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Foetal brain problems caused by flu can be prevented by to-be-mothers: Study

ANI | Updated: Mar 15, 2019 16:45 IST

Washington D.C. [USA] Mar 15 (ANI): According to a recent study Choline, a B vitamin nutrient can help in preventing any foetal brain problems or mental health issues in the baby which is caused by the virus of cold or influenza during pregnancy.
The study published in the Journal of Pediatrics talks about how viruses such as flu or cold in pregnant women have been linked to mental problems or illnesses like Attention Deficit Disorder or Schizophrenia later in life. Moreover, the study found that Choline, an essential B vitamin nutrient can prevent foetal brain developmental problems."Mothers want to give their babies the best possible start in life. Colds and flu are often unavoidable, even if the mother has had a flu shot. But colds and flu during pregnancy double the risk of future mental illnesses.
More and more information shows that choline helps the baby's brain develop properly. We found that higher levels of choline prevent fetal brain problems from developing, even when the mother is infected. Choline supplements in pregnancy can have a lifelong benefit for the infant," said Robert Freedman, the lead author of the study.
The research was conducted at the University of Colorado and Denver Health Medical Center's Prenatal Clinic, with prenatal assessments of maternal infection, C-Reactive Protein (CRP, a marker of maternal inflammation) and the mothers' choline levels.
The baby's brain development before birth was assessed by measuring the baby's brain waves soon after birth. The harmful effects of maternal infections were seen in a reduction of the normal inhibition, also known as response inhibition, of newborns' brain waves to repeated sounds. Simply put, response inhibition is the ability to cease or delay action and to be able to reflect rather than display impulsive behaviour.The body creates some choline on its own and it is also naturally present in certain foods, including liver, red meat and eggs. However, up to 75 per cent of pregnant women consume less choline during pregnancy than recommended (450 mg of choline per day).
The researchers encourage medical associations all over to include them in supplements so that the mother and the baby get the required amount of Choline so as to deliver a healthy baby. (ANI)

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