Home' Trinidad and Tobago Guardian : July 25th 2017 Contents A26 body & soul
guardian.co.tt Tuesday, July 25, 2017
A high-fat diet not only creates health prob-
lems for expectant mothers, but new research
in an animal model suggests it alters the de-
velopment of the brain and endocrine system
of their offspring and has a long-term impact
on offspring behaviour. The new study links
an unhealthy diet during pregnancy to mental
health disorders such as anxiety and depression
"Given the high level of dietary fat consumption and
maternal obesity in developed nations, these findings
have important implications for the mental health of
future generations," the researchers report.
The research was published in the journal Frontiers
The study, led by Elinor Sullivan, PhD, an assistant
professor in the Division of Neuroscience at Oregon
National Primate Research Center at OHSU, tested
the effect of a maternal high-fat diet on non-human
primates, tightly controlling their diet in a way that
would be impossible in a human population. The
study revealed behavioural changes in the offspring
associated with impaired development of the central
serotonin system in the brain. Further, it showed that
introducing a healthy diet to the offspring at an early
age failed to reverse the effect.
Previous observational studies in people correlated
maternal obesity with a range of mental health and
neurodevelopmental disorders in children. The new
research demonstrates for the first time that a high-fat
diet, increasingly common in the developed world,
caused long-lasting mental health ramifications for
the offspring of non-human primates.
In the United States, 64 per cent of women of re-
productive age are overweight and 35 per cent are
obese. The new study suggests that the US obesity
epidemic may be imposing transgenerational effects.
"It's not about blaming the mother," said Sullivan,
senior author on the study. "It's about educating preg-
nant women about the potential risks of a high-fat
diet in pregnancy and empowering them and their
families to make healthy choices by providing support.
We also need to craft public policies that promote
healthy lifestyles and diets."
Researchers grouped a total of 65 female Japanese
macaques into two groups, one given a high-fat diet
and one a control diet during pregnancy. They sub-
sequently measured and compared anxiety-like
behaviour among 135 offspring and found that both
males and females exposed to a high-fat diet during
pregnancy exhibited greater incidence of anxiety com-
pared with those in the control group. The scientists
also examined physiological differences between the
two groups, finding that exposure to a high-fat diet
during gestation and early in development impaired
the development of neurons containing serotonin, a
neurotransmitter that's critical in developing brains.
The new findings suggest that diet is at least as
important as genetic predisposition to neurodevel-
opmental disorders such as anxiety or depression,
said an OHSU paediatric psychiatrist who was not
involved in the research.
"I think it's quite dramatic," said Joel Nigg, PhD,
professor of psychiatry, paediatrics, and behavioural
neuroscience in the OHSU School of Medicine. "A
lot of people are going to be astonished to see that
the maternal diet has this big of an effect on the be-
haviour of the offspring. We've always looked at the
link between obesity and physical diseases like heart
disease, but this is really the clearest demonstration
that it's also affecting the brain."
Sullivan and research assistant and first author
Jacqueline Thompson said they believe the findings
provide evidence that mobilising public resources to
provide healthy food and pre-and post-natal care to
families of all socioeconomic classes could reduce
mental health disorders in future generations.
High-fat diet in pregnancy
can cause mental health
problems in offspring
It's important to eat healthy food during pregnancy.
"My hope is that increased public awareness about
the origins of neuropsychiatric disorders can im-
prove our identification and management of these
conditions, both at an individual and societal level,"
Thompson said. (Oregon Health & Science University)
COUVA TABAQUITE TALPARO REGIONAL CORPORATION
Tenders are invited from Contractors Registered and Approved with the Couva/Tabaquite/Talparo Regional Corporation for works
under the Development Programme 2016/2017:
261- Development of Recreational Facilities:
• Springland Recreation Ground
• Mc Caulay Park Rec Ground Pavilion
• Esmeralda Recreation Ground
• Agostini Recreation Ground Pavilion
• Palmiste Recreation Ground
• Forress Park Recreation Ground
• Poonah Recreation Ground
• Dow Village Recreation Ground
• Dow Village Recreation Ground
• Mc Bean Recreation Ground
• San Pedro Recreation Ground
262 -- Development of Cemeteries and Cremation Facilities
• Phoenix Park Cemetery
• Phoenix Park Cemetery
286 -- Local Government Tourism Programme:
• Knolly's Tunnel
Tender documents can be obtained between the hours 8:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m.
Railway Road, Couva - Telephone No. 636-5580 only on production of a receipt showing that a Non Refundable Tender Deposit of
One Hundred Dollars ($100.00) PER PROJECT has been paid.
Any further technical information may be obtained between the hours 8:00 a.m. to 4:15 p.m. from Ms. Kimberly Baptiste Engineer-
Telephone No: 636-7295, 376- 5011 636-9054 Ext. 244/261.
Tenders must be accompanied by:-
(i) Valid Income Tax and
issued by the Board of Inland Revenue and dated not
more than six (6) months prior to the closing of the tender.
issued in accordance with the National Insurance Act.
The pre-tender meeting would be held on
at 10:00 am followed by site visits.
must be placed in a sealed envelope and addressed to the
at 10:00 a.m. in the WHITE Tenders Box located at the Main Building, Railway Road, Couva and labelled:
Tenders will be opened shortly thereafter. The tenderer or his representative may be present at the opening.
Late tenders will not be considered in any circumstances.
The Committee does not bind itself to accept the lowest or any other tender.
The Committee reserves the right to cancel the bidding process in its entirety or even partially, without defraying any cost incurred
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