Female's heart attack risk may begin in the womb
Your daughter's risk of developing heart disease later in life may increase before they are even born, finds a new Dutch study.
Researchers from the Leiden University Medical Centre in the Netherlands found that women's heart attack risk increased more than eight times if they had certain changes in their genes, the US MSNBC reported.
Previous research has found that these changes occur due to stress in the womb, such as not getting enough nutrients or cigarette smoke, and supports the idea that a mother can directly influence her child's risk of disease through unhealthy practices during pregnancy.
"Health really starts in the womb," said study researcher Bas Heijmans, a molecular epidemiologist at the centre.
VIEW GALLERY:The worst celebrity parents
In the study, researchers looked at 1654 participants aged 70 to 82 who hadn't had a heart attack. After three years, 122 of these people suffered a heart attack and their DNA was compared to 126 individuals of a similar age who had not suffered a heart attack.
During stresses during the in utero environment, six genes undergo what's called epigenetic changes, where a "chemical tag" is added to a section of DNA. Researchers found that two of these genes were associated with an increased risk of heart attack. Women with a tag on one gene were 2.8 times more likely to have a heart attack, and women with a tag on both genes were 8.6 times more likely to have a heart attack.
No changes in these genes were found to increase the heart attack risk for men.
However, Heijmans said further studies still need to be done with a wider range of age groups and to determine exactly what experiences participants have during the prenatal period to influence their genes.
The findings were published in the International Journal of Epidemiology.
VIEW GALLERY:Pregnancy do's and don'ts
10:30AM, Nov 30th 2011
Healthy ways to enjoy Easter WITHOUT all the chocolate!
A beautiful activity for your kids to enjoy as they anticipate a visit from the Easter Bunny.
Fun and practical presents to give this Easter time.
mother and baby Elle Macpherson is 51. She and her husband, Jeffery have copped a bashing online this week after it was revealed they are having a baby. Our online writer, Lauren Sams has a thing or two to say to the keyboard warriors. Click the link on our profile to read what she has to say 👏👏👏More from the team
mother and baby Aussie ironwoman and new mum @candyfalzon with her gorgeous baby, Ivy Mae are on the cover of our April M&B issue. Click the link on our profile to read how Candice coped through a touch-and-go pregnancy and how she juggles motherhood while keeping up with fiancé's @davidwarner31 busy cricketing schedule 💕More from the team
mother and baby We have 4x family passes to the @sydney_royal_easter_show to giveaway. To enter share this post and tag @motherbaby_au with the hashtag #eastershow2015 and tell us what you'd love to show your kids at the Easter Show this year. Make sure your profile is public so we can see your entry 👍🐣💕🐰 Entries close Sunday 29th March, 2015 at 11.59pm AEST. Each prize is a family pass for 2x adults and 2x children to gain entry to the Sydney Royal Easter Show.More from the team
mother and baby Looking for Easter gifts for your kids - without the chocolate? Kelly @beafunmum has shared her top ideas for Easter pressies including this adorable baby bunny onesie from @peteralexanderofficial 💕🐰👏 Click the link in our profile and search "Easter Gifts" for more sugar-free Easter ideas 🐣👍More from the team