Smartfish drink can improve embryo quality in couples undergoing IVF-treatment

The PREPARE trial investigating the effects of a Smartfish drink on fertility was recently published in Fertility and Sterility, and findings show that the Smartfish intervention may improve embryo quality.

As we all know, diet is important for a good health, and can affect the risk of a number of different diseases and health outcomes. Interestingly, in recent years, several observational studies have indicated that variations in preconceptional diet may affect early embryo development, where particular interest has been given to the possible effects of the Mediterranean diet [1, 2]. In connection with this, the Smartfish drink has been used one study[3, 4] (The PREPARE trial) investigating the effects of the drink on fertility. This study on couples undergoing IVF treatment was recently published in Fertility and Sterility, and findings show that the Smartfish intervention may improve embryo quality.

The study by Alexandra Kermack and colleagues was a double-blinded randomized controlled trial, aiming to study the impact of increased dietary intake of omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D and olive oil for 6 weeks before in vitro fertilization (IVF) or IVF-intracytoplasmic sperm injection (ICSI) on morphokinetic markers of early embryo development. The study enrolled a total of 111 couples undergoing IVF or IVF-ICSI, randomized to either receive a daily Smartfish drink (supplement drink enriched with omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin D and additional olive oil) and olive-oil based spread, or the control intervention (sunflower seed oil for cooking, a sunflower seed oil–based spread, and a daily supplement drink without EPA, DHA, or vitamin D).

Results showed no differences in the time taken for completion of the second cell cycle after fertilization (CC2). However, the time taken for completion of the fourth cell cycle (CC4) was accelerated in the study group compared with the control group. In addition, there was observed a significantly shortened synchrony of the third cell cycle (S3) as well as an increase in KIDScore (Known Implantation Data Scores) on day 3. The results indicate improved embryo quality in the study group, and the authors conclude that This study demonstrates that a short period of dietary supplementation alters the rate of embryo cleavage”. You can read the whole study here.


  1. Lăcătușu, C.M., et al., The Mediterranean Diet: From an Environment-Driven Food Culture to an Emerging Medical Prescription. Int J Environ Res Public Health, 2019. 16(6).
  2. Gaskins, A.J. and J.E. Chavarro, Diet and fertility: a review. Am J Obstet Gynecol, 2018. 218(4): p. 379-389.
  3. Kermack, A.J., et al., A randomised controlled trial of a preconceptional dietary intervention in women undergoing IVF treatment (PREPARE trial). BMC Womens Health, 2014. 14: p. 130.
  4. Kermack, A.J., et al., Effect of a 6-week "Mediterranean" dietary intervention on in vitro human embryo development: the Preconception Dietary Supplements in Assisted Reproduction double-blinded randomized controlled trial. Fertil Steril, 2020. 113(2): p. 260-269.



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