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Am J Clin Nutr. 2007 Feb;85(2):530-7.

Maternal diet during pregnancy in relation to eczema and allergic sensitization in the offspring at 2 y of age.

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GSF-National Research Center for Environment and Health, Institute of Epidemiology, Neuherberg, Germany.



Maternal diet during pregnancy might be one of the factors that influences fetal immune responses associated with childhood allergy.


We analyzed the association between maternal diet during the last 4 wk of pregnancy and allergic sensitization and eczema in the offspring at 2 y of age.


Data from 2641 children at 2 y of age were analyzed within a German prospective birth cohort study (LISA). Maternal diet during the last 4 wk of pregnancy was assessed with a semiquantitative food-frequency questionnaire, which was administered shortly after childbirth.


High maternal intake of margarine [adjusted odds ratio (aOR): 1. 49; 95% CI: 1.08, 2.04] and vegetable oils (aOR: 1.48; 95% CI: 1.14, 1.91) during the last 4 wk of pregnancy was positively associated and high maternal fish intake (aOR: 0.75; 95% CI: 0.57, 0.98) was inversely associated with eczema during the first 2 y in the offspring. High celery (aOR: 1.85; 95% CI: 1.18, 2.89) and citrus fruit (aOR: 1.73; 95% CI: 1.18, 2.53) intakes increased the risk of sensitization against food allergens. In turn, sensitization against inhalant allergens was positively related to a high maternal intake of deep-frying vegetable fat (aOR: 1.61; 95% CI: 1.02, 2.54), raw sweet pepper (aOR: 2.16; 95% CI: 1.20, 3.90), and citrus fruit (aOR: 1.72; 95% CI: 1.02, 2.92).


We suggest that the intake of allergenic foods and foods rich in n-6 polyunsaturated fatty acids during pregnancy may increase and foods rich in n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids may decrease the risk of allergic diseases in the offspring.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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