Coffee and chocolate polyphenols linked to reduced rate of pre-eclampsia


Pre-eclampsia (PE), as well as gestational diabetes mellitus (GDM), may increase the risk of maternal and fetal adverse effects, but researchers suggest that polyphenol intake during pregnancy may protect against progression of the disease. disease through antioxidant activity.

Polyphenols found in chocolate, tea, fruits, berries, and other food products are natural compounds with proven health benefits, such as improving glucose tolerance and redox status, and reduction of chronic low-grade inflammation and hepatic steatosis, which inhibit disease pathogenesis.

“At the molecular level, GDM and PE conditions share an imbalance in prooxidant/antioxidant mechanisms.Many studies have suggested that ingesting polyphenol-enriched extracts or polyphenol-rich foods can have positive effects on maternal and fetal health during pregnancy,” write the authors of the recent meta-analysis.

Disease etiology

GDM and PE are common in pregnancy and associated with an increased risk of hypertension and gestational PE. Meanwhile, GDM affects 6-25% of pregnant women, the researchers explain.

“Hyperglycemia during pregnancy is associated with an increased risk of suffering pregnancy complications, but also impacts the development of offspring.”

Additionally, women with DG often have lower levels of circulating antioxidants, such as selenium, zinc, vitamin E, and total antioxidant capacity, than women with normal pregnancies.

In the case of PE, “the pathological alterations are associated with the production of oxidative and nitrosative free radicals by the placenta, considered to be one of the main molecular determinants of disease during pregnancy”, they say.