4 Ancient Benefits of Fish You NEED to Give your Baby
PLUS get an Extra 1 Hour of Sleep and Burn Fat 27% Faster.
In this post:
Omega-3s and the Brain
DHA and Sleep
Mothers Sacrifice and Depression
Bonus Benefits for Mom
How to Improve Your Omega-3 Levels
Wouldn’t it be nice knowing you’re growing or suckling a baby genius while doing everything you can to keep yourself calm, slim, well-rested and happy?
Scientists have proven an ancient secret leading to calm Moms and smart, sleeping babies.
Not following this wisdom may lead to depression.
Our human ancestors consumed much more fish than modern day Mommies which is troubling. Eating a lot of fish results in Mothers packed with an essential lean fat called omega-3s which are only found in fish. Omega-3s are essential because your body cannot make them, you must eat them.(1)
Scientist have proven if you don’t eat enough fish you won’t be as calm, your baby won’t be as smart and neither of you will sleep as well - ya, the stake's are high!
Brightest.com's blog post Sleepy Time Nutrients reports:
“In one study, the children of mothers with the lowest seafood intake had the biggest risk of poor behavior and lower scores in fine motor skills, communication and social development.” (2)
Another study showed babies of mothers who ate fish and/or took a fish oil supplement had a higher IQ at the age of 4. (3)
Thankfully it doesn't take a genius to realize fish is important for your baby!
How does fish help your child behave well, make friends, speak and control their hands?
Fish is so important because the human brain is made of omega-3s.
The brain is the fattiest organ in the body. An extra special omega-3 called DHA makes up a whooping 15% of your brains weight. DHA is needed to grow brain neuron cells.
Brains begin to grow during the 3rd trimester and continue their explosive growth through the first 2 years of life. (4) Find out other important 3rd trimester vitamins at Prenate.com
Babies rely on Mommy for the nutrients required to fuel this smarty-diapers brain growth. If you don’t have enough DHA yourself, your baby may not reach their brain potential.
The importance of DHA is validated by its inclusion in virtually all infant formulas.
Babies who get enough DHA show some amazing advantages over their omega-3 deficient playmates.
Problems with omega-3 deficient babies:
• Slower to speak
• Slower to read
• Worse sleeping habits
Omega-3 deficient children are scientifically proven to throw more and worse temper tantrums.
So if you want a baby that sleeps well, and is smart and well behaved you should make sure they’re getting enough DHA. The best way to get adequate DHA levels for you and your baby is to test them and to eat fresh, fatty fish (salmon) and take a high dose fish oil supplement. Easy.
The only true way to know what your DHA levels are is to test them. Luckily science has made this possible from your own home. Simply order a test from Omega Blood Score and send your sample to the lab.
DHA and Sleep
One experiment done by the University of Oxford showed babies with higher DHA levels woke up less times during the night and slept almost 1 hour longer each night. (5)
What would you do for an extra HOUR of sleep each night and to be woken up less times?
Check out MamaNaturals blog on the subject.
DHA helps improve your babies sleep by controlling melatonin levels. Eating fish and having more DHA has is related to higher melatonin levels. Higher melatonin levels results in better sleep. (6)(7)
Your babies brain also uses DHA to make prostaglandins (Prost-ah-gland-ins aka PGs). PGs are the most potent sleep inducing/promoting substance in the brain. PGs help your baby get to sleep and STAY asleep.(8)(9)
If your baby doesn’t have enough DHA they won't have enough PGs. If your baby doesn't have enough PGs they will take longer to get to sleep and have more disruptions in their sleep/wake cycle.
PGs also naturally induce child labor and are used by doctors to induce labor if need be.
An added benefit of eating more fish and taking fish oil for your babies sake is you get the sleep benefits too! DHA also helps adults get to sleep quickly and sleep deeply. (10)
Mothers Sacrifice and Depression
It’s extremely important for both you and your baby that you have enough omega-3s. Your body will sacrifice your DHA levels to make sure your baby gets the nutrients it needs. This isn’t a good solution because low DHA levels are associated with depression and specifically post partum depression. (11)
If your own brain is drained of DHA you’re susceptible to the blues. This is no way to feel as you enter one of the most rewarding and challenging periods of your life.
Bonuses for Mom:
Strong and healthy nails
Baby soft skin
You can do 3 things today for your peace of mind and your babies health.
1. Take the Omega Blood Score Test to Learn your Actual Levels.
Doctors always say "If you don't test, you've guessed."
2. Eat Fish 2 Times Per Week
Wild salmon and mackerel are best. Try these simple recipes your husband will love.
3. Take a Safe, iFOS Approved Fish Oil Supplement
Aim for 1000mg of EPA and DHA combined per day.
Take your fish oil pills before a meal – this reduces fishy aftertaste and increases absorption
Fish can be expensive, and not everyone loves the taste. Fish oil pills can help and aren’t very expensive
iFOS tests fish oil for mercury
(1) Bradbury J. (2011). Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA): an ancient nutrient for the modern human brain. Nutrients, 3(5), 529-54.
(2) Nora Schneider, Gisella Mutungi & Javier Cubero (2016): Diet and nutrients in the modulation of infant sleep: A review of the literature, Nutritional Neuroscience, DOI: 10.1080/1028415X.2016.1258446
(3) Helland, I.B., et al. Maternal supplementation with very-long-chain n-3 fatty acids during pregnancy and lactation augments children’s IQ at 4 years of age. Pediatrics 111, e39-e44 (2003).
(4) Horrocks, LA., Yeo, YK. Health benefits of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA). Pharmacy Res. 1999 Sep;40(3):211-25. Retrieved on December 16, 2015 from http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/ 10479465
(5) Paul Montgomery et al. Fatty acids and sleep in UK children: Subjective and pilot objective sleep results from the DOLAB study – a randomised controlled trial. Journal of Sleep Research, March 2014 DOI: 10.1111/jsr.12135
(6) Zhang, H., Hamilton, J. H., Salem, N. & Kim, H.-Y. N–3 fatty acid deficiency in the rat pineal gland: effects on phospholipid molecular species composition and endogenous levels of melatonin and lipoxygenase products. Journal of lipid research 39, 1397–1403 (1998).
(7) Catala, A. The function of very long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids in the pineal gland. Biochim Biophys Acta 1801, 95–99, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.bbalip.2009.10.010 (2010).
An added benefit of fish is in the production of a lesser known neurochemical call prostaglandins (Prost-ah-gland-ins).
(8) Urade, Y. & Hayaishi, O. Prostaglandin D2 and sleep/wake regulation. Sleep Med Rev 15, 411–418, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.smrv.2011.08.003 (2011).
(9) Judge, M. P., Cong, X., Harel, O., Courville, A. B. & Lammi-Keefe, C. J. Maternal consumption of a DHA-containing functional food benefits infant sleep patterning: an early neurodevelopmental measure. Early Hum Dev 88, 531–537, https://doi.org/10.1016/j.earlhumdev.2011.12.016 (2012).
(10 )Christian, L. M. et al. Polyunsaturated Fatty Acid (PUFA) Status in Pregnant Women: Associations with Sleep Quality, Inflammation, and Length of Gestation. Plos One 11, e0148752,
(11) Levant B. (2010). N-3 (omega-3) Fatty acids in postpartum depression: implications for prevention and treatment. Depression research and treatment, 2011, 467349.