Mise à jour de la composition du lait maternel en acides gras polyinsaturés et en vitamines liposolubles dans une population de femmes allaitantes françaises

Lipides, Nutrition

Intervention orale de Benjamin Buaud, Responsable Projet Nutrition-Santé & Biochimie des Lipides, au 17ème Congrès Euro Fed Lipid, 22 octobre 2019 : « Update of the polyunsaturated fatty acid and fat-soluble vitamin composition of breast milk in a population of french lactating women ».



N-6 and n-3 polyunsaturated fatty acids (PUFA), whether their respective precursors, the linoleic (LA) and a-linolenic (ALA), or their long chain derivatives, such as docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) for the n-3 series, are essential nutrients for the human health, notably during the perinatal period of growth and development.

Breast milk is the only nutritional source for breast-fed infant in the first months of life. Unlike proteins and carbohydrates, the composition of breast milk in terms of n-6 (LA) and n-3 PUFA (ALA, DHA), and fat-soluble vitamins (A, D, E), depends on the diet of the lactating woman. The latest data (collected in 2014) on the consumption of fatty acids and vitamins by French breastfeeding women showed that the mean n-3 PUFA (notably ALA and DHA) and fat-soluble vitamin (A, D, E) intakes were both far below the recommended dietary intakes. Such a deficient status during lactation -in addition to the last trimester of pregnancy- is of public health concern: this period of developing brain in early infancy is particularly critical for ensuring development of infant brain and visual systems. If the consumption data of breastfeeding women are described, on the other hand those relating to the nutritional quality of breast milk (such as fatty acid and fat-soluble vitamin contents) are scarce in Europe, especially in France.

In this context, our study evaluates in 155 French female breast milk donors living in the North and the South-West of France, at two periods of the year, the nutritional quality of breast milk regarding the composition in fatty acids and vitamins A, D, E, associated with the dietary habits in terms of plant and animal sources of lipids.

Our preliminary results show that both the mean ALA and DHA proportions and fat-soluble vitamin contents in breast milk correspond to the low ranges of levels of these nutrients that are recommended for the needs of the early infancy. Regarding their dietary habits, French lactating women consume frequently olive oil and butter, but few vegetable oils rich in ALA, and oily fish.

Since dietary habits influence the nutritional quality of breast milk, these updated data on the human milk fatty acid and fat-soluble vitamin composition may contribute to adapt nutritional recommendations for French breastfeeding women.




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