Elevated inflammation in pregnancy has been associated with multiple adverse pregnancy outcomes and potentially an increased susceptibility to future chronic disease. How maternal dietary patterns influence systemic inflammation during pregnancy requires further investigation. The purpose of this review was to comprehensively evaluate studies that assessed dietary patterns and inflammatory markers during pregnancy. This review was guided by the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Review and Meta-Analyses. Included studies were sourced from EMBASE, PubMed, Web of Science, and Scopus and evaluated using The Quality Assessment Tool for Quantitative Studies. Inclusion criteria consisted of human studies published in English between January 2007 and May 2020 that addressed associations between dietary patterns and inflammatory markers during pregnancy. Studies focused on a single nutrient, supplementation, or combined interventions were excluded. A total of 17 studies were included. Despite some inconsistent findings, maternal diets characterized by a higher intake of animal protein and cholesterol and/or a lower intake of fiber were shown to be associated with certain pro-inflammatory markers (C-reactive protein (CRP), interleukin-6 (IL-6), tumor necrosis factor-α (TNF- α), IL-8, serum amyloid A (SAA), and glycoprotein acetylation (GlycA)). Future studies that explore a broader range of inflammatory markers in the pregnant population, reduce measurement errors, and ensure adequate statistical adjustment are warranted.

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Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License
This work is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License.

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Wegmans School of Health and Nutrition (CHST)


RIT – Main Campus