It would seem doctors don’t want pregnant women to have any fun. For years they’ve warned against drinking, smoking, and even caffeine consumption during pregnancy. And now they’re saying drinking sugary drinks during pregnancy could increase a child’s likelihood of developing asthma.
This new study was presented at the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology meeting in early March. It looked at data gathered over the course of several years from more than 2,000 mothers and children. The mothers were asked to fill out food frequency questionnaires during pregnancy and when their children were 2.
By the time the children reached about 8 years old, 19.7% of them had asthma. Researchers examined the self-reported data and saw a correlation between fructose consumption and asthma. The children whose mothers drank sugary beverages during the second trimester of pregnancy were at highest risk. And the children who drank more juice than their peers at age 2 also had an increased risk.
Those with the most fructose intake also tended to be poorer and have a higher body mass index (BMI). It’s possible that some of the other conditions that come along with being poor, or having a high BMI, are actually what caused the increased rates of asthma. More research is needed to fully understand the relationship between fructose consumption and asthma.
Previous studies have also linked fructose consumption to diabetes, nonalcoholic fatty liver disease, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and gout.