Conceptual photo about MISCARRIAGE with handwritten phrase
Yuriy K/Shutterstock

Food, Farming and Nutrition

Journal Abstracts
May 25, 2023

Food, Farming and Nutrition

Reducing the Risk of Miscarriage

Journal Abstracts
Jun 18, 2024

Miscarriage is common, with estimates suggesting that one in six pregnancies end in miscarriage. While there are many known causes, including chromosomal problems and infections in the womb, nearly half of pregnancy losses remain unexplained, and a growing body of research suggests that lifestyle changes may have an impact.

A new review of research has found that a preconception and early-pregnancy diet that contains lots of fruit, vegetables, seafood, dairy, eggs and grain may be associated with a lower risk of miscarriage.

Researchers at the University of Birmingham analyzed 20 studies that examined the eating habits of 63,838 healthy women of childbearing age in the months before and shortly after conception to see whether there was evidence of an association with a lower or higher chance of miscarriage.

A whole diet containing healthy foods overall, or foods rich in antioxidant sources, and low in pro-inflammatory foods or unhealthy food groups may be associated with a lower risk of miscarriage. A diet high in processed food was associated with doubling the risk of miscarriage.

The review found that, when compared to low consumption, high intake of fruit may be associated with a 61% reduction in miscarriage risk, and high vegetable intake may be associated with a 41% reduction in miscarriage risk. Dairy products were associated with a 37% reduction, grains showed a 33% reduction, and 19% for seafood and eggs.

The evidence was uncertain for meat, red meat, white meat, fat and oil, and sugar substitutes. The researchers also looked at whether specific types of diets (such as the Mediterranean Diet or Fertility Diet) were also linked to miscarriage risk, but could not find evidence that following any of these diets lowered or raised risk.

The research was published in the journal Fertility and Sterility.

REFERENCES

Chung, Y., et al. (2023, April). The association between dietary patterns and risk of miscarriage: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Fertility and Sterility. https://www.fertstert.org/article/S0015-0282(23)00296-0/pdf

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