Western Diet Linked to Birth Defects

The Physicians Committee

Western Diet Linked to Birth Defects

August 10, 2007

A new study from the Netherlands that analyzed the diets of 381 mothers found that a Western diet is linked to birth defects. Those women with a “Western dietary pattern,” characterized by high intakes of organ meat, red meat, processed meat, pizza, legumes, potatoes, French fries, condiments, and mayonnaise, but low intakes of fruits had a higher risk of a cleft lip or cleft palate among their offspring. Women who consumed the greatest amount of these foods had nearly double the risk compared with those who consumed the least.

Vujkovic M, Ocke MC, Van der Spek P, Yazdanpanah N, et al. Maternal Western dietary patterns and the risk of developing a cleft lip with or without a cleft palate. Obstet Gynecol. 2007;110:378-384.

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