TIME magazine Oct 2010
We know that diet, environment and genes all play a major role in determining our weight and shape. However an emerging area of science known as foetal origins may provide even further clues as to why some people are predisposed to being overweight, as well as a number of other health concerns.
The feature article The Womb. Your Mother. Yourself, in the October 4, 2010 issue of TIME magazine delves into the science of foetal origins. To quote TIME magazine, ‘The kind and quantity of nutrition you received in the womb; the pollutants, drugs and infections you were exposed to during gestation; your mother’s health, stress level and state of mind while she was pregnant with you – all these factors shaped you as a baby and a child and continue to affect you to this day.’
With respect to body weight, could it be that a tendency for being overweight/obese can be programmed as early as in the womb? The TIME article reviews several studies and the following conclusions were made; ‘Mothers who gain excessive weight during pregnancy tend to have heavier toddlers… Kids conceived after a mother’s successful weight loss surgery were 52% less likely to be obese than siblings born while she was overweight’.
Although this is new area of science, it really does emphasise the significance of good health and weight balance, especially during those crucial baby making years. An abridged version of the TIME article is available here.