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Why fried food is not good for you and your baby

Alixandra Caole Vila (The Philippine Star) - October 11, 2014 - 3:06pm

MANILA, Philippines – Who does not love fried burger, bacon and fries? Every bite makes you indulge with more. But for those who are planning to conceive a baby, these food items should be avoided.

A recent study published by Diabetologia discovered that women who eat fried food regularly before conceiving are at increased risk of developing gestational diabetes during pregnancy. Diabetes is a growing global health crisis that has reached epidemic proportions. Today, there are 382 million people or 8.3 percent of the world’s total adult population living with diabetes.

Gestational diabetes is characterized by high blood glucose during pregnancy, currently believed to be due to the action of insulin being blocked by hormones. Gestational diabetes is not only associated with short-term perinatal outcomes, but is also related to long-term metabolic risks in both mothers and their offspring.

Researchers distributed diet questionnaires to 15,027 women enrolled in the Nurses’ Health Study II. Since 1991 and every 4 years thereafter, the researchers collected diet information, including consumption of fried foods at home and away from home, using a validated food frequency questionnaire. They found out that women who include fried food in their regular diet seven or more times weekly are 88 percent more at-risk for gestational diabetes than those who take fried food less.

Those who eat fried food away from home compared to those who eat fried food from home are more exposed to the danger. According to the study, this is because fast food chains reuse oil that they used to fry the food.

Why not fried?

Frying is a complex cooking process that modifies both the foods and the frying medium. It reduces water content, increases energy density, changes fatty acid composition and deteriorates frying oils, especially when eused, through the processes of oxidation and hydrogenation

“Refrying may produce more of those detrimental chemicals,” says co-author Cuilin Zhang, MD, an investigator at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, as mentioned by Time.

While fried foods are indeed aromatic and palatable, people must also understand the potential benefits of limiting fried food consumption to thwart gestational diabetes in women of reproductive age.

CUILIN ZHANG DIABETES DIABETOLOGIA EUNICE KENNEDY SHRIVER NATIONAL INSTITUTE OF CHILD HEALTH AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT FOOD FRIED GESTATIONAL HEALTH HEALTH STUDY
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