According to a study conducted by researchers from the National Institute for Consumer Research and the Norwegian Institute of Public Health, organic food consumers are likely to have a 21% lower risk of a potentially deadly pregnancy complication known as pre-eclampsia. Pre-eclampsia is characterized by high blood pressure and signs of damage to other organ system, often the kidney, resulting to a large protein amount in the urine.
The study is to show the effect of consuming organic foods in the reduction of pre-eclampsia risk.
"The result is intriguing and supports that diet during pregnancy can influence the risk of pre-eclampsia," researcher Hanne Torjusen, PhD, said.
The researchers followed 28,192 participants from the Norwegian Mother and Child Cohort Study who were pregnant with their first child. Based on the result of the study, researchers found that women who mostly ate organic vegetables and fruits were 21 percent less likely to develop pre-eclampsia than women who rarely or never did so. Women who consumed organic foods tended to be younger, have lower body mass, and consumed more calories than women who did not.
Eating lots of vegetables has always been essential for all pregnant women, but the new study recommends that eating organic vegetables may provide additional health benefits. Researchers weighed in the possible factors by which such an effect could work. These factors include lower exposure to pesticides, higher intake of antioxidants which are mostly found in organic vegetables and producing a more beneficial composition of gut microbes, thereby reducing the risk of inflammatory conditions.