Important foods for pregnant women.
Too-high cholesterol levels in a pregnant woman could impair blood flow through the umbilical cord and uterine arteries, affecting the fetus' nutrition. But levels that are too low may also be a problem: Research from the National Institutes of Health shows that both very high and very low cholesterol levels increase the risk of premature birth. An appropriate amount of cholesterol in pregnancy is critical for the health of the placenta and the fetus, including its brain development. Genetics play a part, but too-low cholesterol usually occurs when the diet is very low in fat.