Lipid-based nutrient supplements for pregnant women

New protocol published: Lipid-based nutrient supplements for pregnant women and their impact on pregnancy, birth, and infant developmental outcomes in stable and emergency settings.

The nutritional status of women prior to and during pregnancy plays a key role in fetal growth and development, and women's energy and protein requirements significantly increase during pregnancy. Maternal undernutrition is still prevalent especially in low and middle income countries (LMICs). It causes maternal and child morbidity and mortality, and can lead to impairments in child cognitive development and pose adverse health outcomes in adulthood. Lipid-based nutrient supplements (LNS) are currently being used in programmes targeting pregnant women in LMICs with the expectation of improving birth outcomes and reducing Low birth weight. Current studies have shown mixed effects of this intervention using varying composition, dose, frequency and comparison groups between studies.

This review will:

(1) assess the effects LNS for women during pregnancy on maternal, birth and infant outcomes,

(2) explore the most appropriate composition, frequency and duration of LNS.

The authors of this review will also be conducting a partner review which will assess the provision of preventive LNS given with complementary foods to infants and young children 6 to 23 months of age for health, nutrition, and developmental outcomes. Read more here.

New review published. 

Recurrent abdominal pain, or RAP, is a term used for unexplained episodes of stomachache or abdominal pain in children. Recurrent abdominal pain is a common condition, and most children are likely to be helped by simple measures. However, a range of treatments have been recommended to relieve abdominal pain, including making changes to the child's eating habits by adding supplements or excluding certain foods.

The authors found some evidence suggesting that probiotics may be helpful in relieving pain in children with RAP in the short term. Clinicians may therefore consider probiotic interventions as part of the management strategy for RAP. Further trials are needed to find out how effective probiotics are over longer periods of time and which probiotics might work best.

There was no convincing evidence that fibre supplements are effective in improving pain in children with RAP. Future larger, high-quality studies are needed to test the effectiveness of fibre and low FODMAP (fermentable oligosaccharides, disaccharides, monosaccharides and polyols) diet treatments.