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Clinical Perspectives: Eat Whole Grains to Avoid Preeclampsia and Boost Your Baby’s Immune System

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Clinical Perspectives: Eat Whole Grains to Avoid Preeclampsia and Boost Your Baby’s Immune System

Welcome to Clinical Perspectives, a new column from Mommy Matters. We cull the newest, most important pregnancy and postpartum news and break it down into a few takeaway points you need to know. Also, we have our own medical expert, Dr. Shirazian, who reviews each article and adds the clinical perspective. If you are interested in learning more on your own, our MD-trusted sources include the American College of Obstetricians and GynecologistsAmerican Academy of Pediatrics, and Very Well Health.


July 12, 2019 - New research has found that fiber-rich diets may help prevent the dangerous pregnancy complication of preeclampsia while also supporting fetal immune development.

Key Takeaways:

  • Preeclampsia, a dangerous complication that occurs in up to 10% of pregnancies, involves a high spike in blood pressure that can cause protein in the urine, edema, and problems with organ function.
  • Eating more fiber in the form of whole grains and vegetables may help lower pregnant women’s risk for preeclampsia.
  • Mothers’ gut bacteria and diet are important to promote a healthy pregnancy: Fiber fermentation in the gut boosts acetate levels (low acetate levels are associated with higher risk of preeclampsia).
  • Because maternal preeclampsia affects fetal development of the thymus, an important immune organ, getting enough fiber may also prevent children from developing allergies and autoimmune conditions later in life. 
  • Bottom line: Follow Michael Pollan’s advice to “eat real food, mostly plants, and not too much” to lower your risk of preeclampsia and support your baby’s developing immune system.

You can read the original article here.

Disclaimer: This is general medical information and not specific medical advice.  It does not and should not replace diagnosis or treatment by your healthcare provider. If you are seeking personal recommendations, advice, and/or treatment, please consult your physician. If you have an emergency, you should contact 911 or go to the nearest Emergency Room.