The Link Uncovered: Sugar and Allergies During Pregnancy
Okay, you have a little bun in the oven, and you are suffering from some of those pregnancy sugar cravings. As most women who have been pregnant before will tell you, cravings can be a common part of pregnancy. However, expectant mothers who fall to the temptation of too much sugar during pregnancy may be unwillingly increasing the risk of allergies and asthma into their unborn child.
Bondi Beach Tea Co. uncovered some recent research out of the Queen Mary University of London in the UK, where researchers evaluated survey data from almost 9,000 mother-child pairs in the ongoing Avon Longitudinal Study of Parents and Children. This data tracked the health of families who had children born between 1 April 1991 and 31 December 1992.
Using self-reported evaluations of intake of sugar from questionnaires, the researchers worked out the quantity of sugar that the mothers consumed during their pregnancy. This was compared against the number of children that were diagnosed with allergies or asthma by age seven years.
Researchers found that a high intake of sugar during pregnancy actually doubled the chances of a child to develop allergic asthma. Some of their other findings included:
- The risk of allergy was bumped by up to 73 per cent. However, they did not uncover any link between sugar exposure within the womb to rates of hay fever or eczema.
- The researchers analyzed the 20 per cent of mothers who took in the greatest amount of sugar whilst they were pregnant, against an equal proportion of mothers who consumed the least amount of sugar.
The study’s lead researcher, Professor Sief Shaheen, commented on the probability of their findings,
“We cannot say, on the basis of these observations, that a high intake of sugar by mothers in pregnancy is definitely causing allergy and allergic asthma in their offspring. However, given the extremely high consumption of sugar in the West, we will certainly be investigating this hypothesis further with some urgency. In the meantime, we would recommend that pregnant women follow current guidelines and avoid excessive sugar consumption."
The link to sugar and asthma may possibly be illuminated by high intakes of fructose, which triggers an immune response and promotes inflammation in developing lungs. Fructose is the kind of sugar that is located in fruits and corn syrup, and it is commonly used in many processed foods.
The researchers commented that sugar which was freely consumed during early childhood had no effect on the results. It was sugar exposure at the fetal stage that was vital to the findings.
If you are on the hunt for a quick-fix to your sugar cravings, why not relax and sip back a blend of tasty herbal tea instead. Bondi Beach Tea Co. offers a natural range of tea blends, with no need for any added sugar.
*N.B. Bondi Beach Tea Co. recommends that you check with your health care professional before using any herbs whilst pregnant.