New research links nutritional supplementation taken during preconception and in pregnancy to reduced risk of pre-term birth

A mother's diet before and during pregnancy is important for herself and gives her baby the best start in life.


Increasing scientific evidence shows that a mother’s nutritional status before and in early pregnancy influences the growth and development of her baby and can help reduce the risk of pregnancy complications.

New research has linked a specific blend of myo-inositol, probiotics and micronutrients to the decreased incidence of preterm birth when consumed before and during pregnancy.

As part of the NiPPeR study (Nutritional Intervention Preconception and during Pregnancy to maintain healthy glucose levels and offspring health), the nutritional supplement was developed and tested by a group of academics from the international EpiGen Global Research Consortium in collaboration with scientists at Nestlé Research.

During the trial, researchers assessed the effects of the nutritional supplement on maintaining healthy blood sugar levels and sustaining a healthy pregnancy and delivery. The supplement was found to decrease the incidence of preterm birth, particularly preterm birth associated with the premature rupture of membranes before the onset of labor. However, there was no influence on the mother’s blood sugar levels or birthweights of the babies born.

Dr. Isabelle Bureau-Franz, Head of Nestlé Research says, “Maternal and infant nutrition are equally important in the first 1000 days of life. We are focused on discovering science-based solutions for mothers and their infants during preconception, pregnancy and while breastfeeding. The NiPPeR study is a great example of how a public-private partnership can jointly build scientific evidence on nutritional interventions in a largely understudied group.”

The NiPPeR trial is one of the largest randomized control trials that is studying preconception nutritional interventions at an international level. It is led by an academic group of clinicians and scientists from the EpiGen Global Research Consortium, working in collaboration with scientists at Nestlé Research. Over 1700 women from the U.K., New Zealand and Singapore who were planning pregnancy participated in the study. Findings from the study were recently published in Diabetes Care, a peer-reviewed medical journal.

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