The impact of omega-3 fatty acid supplementation on glycemic control in patients with gestational diabetes: a systematic review and meta-analysis of randomized controlled studies

J Matern Fetal Neonatal Med. 2020 May;33(10):1767-1773. doi: 10.1080/14767058.2018.1526916. Epub 2018 Oct 29.


Background: Omega-3 fatty acid supplementation shows some treatment efficacy for gestational diabetes. This systematic review and meta-analysis is conducted to investigate the efficacy of omega-3 fatty acid supplementation for glycemic control in patients with gestational diabetes.Methods: The databases including PubMed, Embase, Web of science, EBSCO, and Cochrane Library databases are systematically searched for collecting the randomized controlled trials (RCTs) regarding the efficacy of omega-3 fatty acid versus placebo for gestational diabetes.Results: This meta-analysis has included seven RCTs. Compared with placebo group in patients with gestational diabetes, omega-3 fatty acids supplementation results in remarkably reduced fasting plasma glucose (FPG) (standard mean difference (std. MD) = -0.56; 95% confidence interval (CI) = -0.87 to -0.24; p = .0005), homeostatic model of assessment for insulin resistance (HOMA-IR) (std. MD = -0.52; 95% CI = -0.83 to -0.21; p = .001), but has no statistical impact on macrosomia (risk ratio (RR) = 0.48; 95% CI = 0.22-1.02; p = .06), newborns' hyperbilirubinemia (RR = 0.46; 95% CI = 0.19-1.10; p = .08), nitric oxide (NO) (std. MD = 0.17; 95% CI = -0.64-0.98; p = .68), preterm delivery (RR = 1.75; 95% CI = 0.08-3.80; p=.16) and preeclampsia (RR =0.74; 95% CI = 0.26-2.16; p = .59). However, notably decreased high sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) is revealed after omega-3 fatty acids supplementation (std. MD = -1.14; 95% CI = -2.0 to -0.29; p = .009).Conclusions: Omega-3 fatty acids supplementation can provide substantially beneficial effects on glycemic control and inflammatory response for gestational diabetes.

Keywords: Gestational diabetes; glycemic control; meta-analysis; omega-3 fatty acid; randomized controlled trials.