Weight gain and metabolic dysfunction in adulthood could be linked to maternal omega-3 fatty acid intake during gestation and lactation. A recent mouse study found that maternal PUFA (polyunsaturated fatty acid) production during pregnancy and nursing significantly reduced weight gain and markers for metabolic dysfunction in male offspring fed a high fat diet. The study states that the fatty acid profile in maternal tissue has a profound influence on offspring gut microbiome composition and function, which is long lasting through adulthood. Interestingly, no correlation was found between maternal PUFA profiles and female offspring weight gain. The study also found that maternal fatty acid status influenced offspring metabolism and microbial composition more profoundly during lactation than in utero. Microbiome Journal
→Takeaway: For those who are nursing, pregnant or wanting to get pregnant, omega-3 fatty acid intake is important. To be sure you’re consuming enough omega-3’s in your diet, focus on a plant-based diet rich in variety. Plant foods highest in omega-3 fatty acids include walnuts, chia seeds, flaxseed, hemp seed, beans, legumes, and leafy greens.