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PMM.31 Pregnant women’s knowledge and consumption on long chain omega-3 polyunsaturated fatty acid supplements
  1. CH Yu,
  2. LW Chan,
  3. WC Lam,
  4. WK To
  1. United Christian Hospital, Kowloon, Hong Kong

Abstract

Objectives To study the percentage of pregnant women who consumed omega-3 fatty acids in the course of pregnancy, and to assess their knowledge on the source and potential health benefits of these supplements.

Method An anonymous self- administered questionnaire on the use and knowledge of omega-3 fatty acids was distributed to the pregnant women in the antenatal clinic in the United Christian Hospital, Hong Kong in May 2012.

Result Two hundred Fifty-four questionnaires were received. Fourteen (10.9%) and fifteen (14.7%) women from the first and third trimester group reported the consumption of omega-3 fatty acids during current pregnancy respectively. The mean score of all the subjects on knowledge of omega-3 fatty acids was 7.87 out of 12. Women who were taking omega-3 supplements, who had completed tertiary education, with monthly income >HK$30,000 and who were Hong Kong residents had significantly better knowledge. About 80% of the subjects would like to have more information on the use of omega-3 fatty acids supplementation during pregnancy.

Conclusion Although there is still lack of concrete evidence on the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids in pregnancy, there were 10–15% of pregnant women taking these supplements despite their fair knowledge. Further study is required to confirm the benefits of omega-3 fatty acids and better public education in this area is recommended. It would be most appreciated if medical professionals can provide more information on various nutritional supplements to pregnant women.

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