Junk food addiction sounds like good fodder for a sketch comedy skit. Yet, women all over the nation are priming their babies to become fiends for high-fat, high-sugar diets later in life. And the results aren’t so funny.
The medical field has long known that an unhealthy diet during pregnancy can have negative effects on baby. Now, new research out of the University of Adelaide suggests that moms-to-be have a shot at turning this situation around.
Focusing on good, healthy eating late in pregnancy can be best for influencing your child’s diet down the line. It all has to do with the way our brains are wired: Kids over-exposed to high-fat, high-sugar foods have a less sensitive reward system and need more junk food to feel the good effects sweet treats bring. So, the less you expose your baby to junk food, the more sensitive their reward system – and the less sweets they’ll end up consuming in the long run.
But why does timing matter? Dr. Beverly Muhlhausler, a senior research fellow with the university, told Medical News Today that “this brain area grows at its fastest during these critical windows and is therefore most susceptible to alteration at these times.”
That’s reassuring news to any expectant mom who’s turned to one too many doughnuts early on. While healthy eating is important throughout pregnancy, some of the choices you make in your first trimester may be turned around by the end.
What do you think of this news? How have you been keeping healthy during your pregnancy? Share your tips and tricks in the comments below.