Yet another benefit of breastfeeding, omega-3 coming from breastmilk has been found to reduce type 1 diabetes risk. A high serum level of omega-3 fatty acids was found out to be correlated with a lower risk of insulin autoimmunity.
The study showed that women who consume omega 3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFAs), especially in oily fish such as salmon and trout, during pregnancy or lactation period, may reduce the risk of developing Type 1 diabetes in their children.
Dr. Niinistö and team used data from the Finnish Type 1 Diabetes Prediction and Prevention Study. They examined whether particularly high serum levels of omega-3 during infancy are associated with autoimmunity development in children who already had a higher risk of developing type 1 diabetes.
Infants who had been breastfed had increased serum levels of fatty acids – such as pentadecanoic acid, palmitic acid, docosapentaenoic acid, and docosahexaenoic acid – and had a lower risk of autoimmunity, compared with infants who were fed cow’s milk-based formula.
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