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Nutrients 2014, 6(11), 4918-4934; doi:10.3390/nu6114918

Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid Composition of Maternal Diet and Erythrocyte Phospholipid Status in Chilean Pregnant Women

1
Department of Nutrition, Faculty of Medicine, University of Chile, Av. Independencia 1027, Independencia, Santiago 8380453, Chile
2
Obstetrics and Gynecology Department, Clinical Hospital of the University of Chile, Av. Santos Dumont 999, Independencia, Santiago 8380453, Chile
3
Lipid Center, Institute of Nutrition and Food Technology (INTA), University of Chile, Av. El Líbano 5524, Macul, Santiago 8380453, Chile
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 11 September 2014 / Revised: 14 October 2014 / Accepted: 24 October 2014 / Published: 7 November 2014
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrition in Pregnancy)
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Abstract

Chilean diets are characterized by a low supply of n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (n-3 PUFA), which are critical nutrients during pregnancy and lactation, because of their role in brain and visual development. DHA is the most relevant n-3 PUFA in this period. We evaluated the dietary n-3 PUFA intake and erythrocyte phospholipids n-3 PUFA in Chilean pregnant women. Eighty healthy pregnant women (20–36 years old) in the 3rd–6th month of pregnancy were included in the study. Dietary assessment was done applying a food frequency questionnaire, and data were analyzed through the Food Processor SQL® software. Fatty acids of erythrocyte phospholipids were assessed by gas-liquid chromatography. Diet composition was high in saturated fat, low in mono- and PUFA, high in n-6 PUFA (linoleic acid) and low in n-3 PUFA (alpha-linolenic acid and DHA), with imbalance in the n-6/n-3 PUFA ratio. Similar results were observed for fatty acids from erythrocyte phospholipids. The sample of Chilean pregnant women showed high consumption of saturated fat and low consumption of n-3 PUFA, which is reflected in the low DHA content of erythrocyte phospholipids. Imbalance between n-6/n-3 PUFA could negatively affect fetal development. New strategies are necessary to improve n-3 PUFA intake throughout pregnancy and breast feeding periods. Furthermore, it is necessary to develop dietary interventions to improve the quality of consumed foods with particular emphasis on n-3 PUFA. View Full-Text
Keywords: pregnancy; dietary intake; n-6 and n-3 PUFA intake; DHA; fatty acid phospholipids pregnancy; dietary intake; n-6 and n-3 PUFA intake; DHA; fatty acid phospholipids
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Bascuñán, K.A.; Valenzuela, R.; Chamorro, R.; Valencia, A.; Barrera, C.; Puigrredon, C.; Sandoval, J.; Valenzuela, A. Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid Composition of Maternal Diet and Erythrocyte Phospholipid Status in Chilean Pregnant Women. Nutrients 2014, 6, 4918-4934.

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