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DEPRESSION AND LOW SERUM LEVELS OF DOCOSAHEXAENOIC ACID (DHA) ARE ASSOCIATED WITH INCREASING NUMBER OF PREGNANCIES AMONG POSTPARTUM OMANI WOMEN

Lamya Al Kharusi, Mostafa I. Waly, Hassan Mohammed Othman, Nejib Guizani, Farhat Al Naabi, Amanat Ali

Abstract


Depression is a global public-health burden. It has been suggested that dietary supplementation of docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) during the prenatal stage may lead to an improvement in postpartum depression. No relevant studies have been conducted in the Sultanate of Oman investigating the status of depression and serum levels of DHA during postpartum period.  The present was therefore conducted to collect the baseline information about the postpartum depression status, DHA depletion during the postpartum period and to investigate the impact of repeated pregnancies on development of depression and serum DHA levels in postpartum Omani women. This cross-sectional study involved a total of 87 Omani women including 70 postpartum women and 17 women with no history of pregnancy. A depression scale was used to screen all the study participants. Dietary intake was evaluated using a semi quantitative food frequency questionnaire and serum levels of DHA were measured using HPLC-based technique. The depression score among postpartum women who had 4-8 pregnancies was significantly (P < 0.05) higher than those who had 1-3 pregnancies as well as to controls. No significant (P < 0.05) differences were observed between postpartum women and control group with regard to the consumption of foods containing DHA or its precursors. Postpartum women with 4-8 pregnancies had the lowest serum levels of DHA. The results suggest that depression and low serum levels of DHA were found to be associated with higher number of pregnancies (4 to 8) among the postpartum Omani women.


Keywords


Depression, serum DHA level, postpartum Omani women

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DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.21065/19257430.81.1

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