Nutrition paves the way to environmental toxicants and influences fetal development during pregnancy

Elsevier, Best Practice and Research: Clinical Obstetrics and Gynaecology, Volume 89, July 2023
Meyyazhagan A., Kuchi Bhotla H., Tsibizova V., Pappuswamy M., Chaudhary A., Arumugam V.A. et al.

Nutrition plays a major role in the healthy pregnancy and development of the fetus. In addition, nutrition can expose humans to a wide range of potentially hazardous environmental constituents, such as organic pollutants and heavy metals from marine or agricultural food products while processing, producing, and packaging. Humans constantly face these constituents through air, water, soil, food, and domestic products. During pregnancy, the rate of cellular division and differentiation is higher; exposure to any of these environmental toxicants can lead to developmental defects as they cross the placental barrier and, in some cases, can harm the successive generation too, as some contaminants can act on the reproductive cells of the fetus (Diethylstilbestrol). Pregnant women are considered a vulnerable population to food contaminant exposure and require a proper dietary chart and conscious food choices. Food is a source of both essential nutrients and environmental toxicants. Here, we have researched the possible toxicants of the food industry and their influence on the fetus's in-utero development, along with the importance of dietary interventions and the need to balance a healthy diet to overcome the harms. The cumulative exposure to environmental toxicants can influence the mother's prenatal environment and affect the fetus's development.