Maternal diet and body mass index

How are maternal diet and body mass index relevant to risk for schizophrenia?

Consumption of a balanced diet and maintaining healthy weight during pregnancy aids the development of a healthy fetus. This may act as a preventative factor for the development of schizophrenia in adulthood.

What is the evidence for maternal diet and body mass index?

Moderate quality evidence suggests a small effect of increased risk of schizophrenia in adulthood after exposure to famine or nutritional deficif in utero. There are also medium-sized effects of increased risk of schizophrenia in offspring of mothers with low retinol levels during the 2nd trimester of pregnancy, high serum docosahexaenoic acid during pregnancy, or high pregnancy or pre-pregnancy body mass index. Lower quality evidence suggests greater fish consumption during pregnancy may lower the risk of schizophrenia in the offspring.

April 2022

Image: ©Kaspars Grinvalds –

Last updated at: 4:58 pm, 13th April 2022
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Fact Sheet Technical Commentary
Tags:  Maternal diet

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