A study of childbirths in developing countries revealed that taller mothers’ babies are generally healthier and run less risk of dying before they turn five.
The study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association compared children in accordance with the height of their mothers and concluded that those born to shorter mothers show a marked tendency to have a lesser weight and sorter height. Besides, the risk of their dying in early childhood is higher by 40 per cent.
Links between the height of an adult and their income and lifespan have already been established, brought down to the influence of “the stressful nutritional environment of the mother in early life.”
The new study places maternal height in the list of the most important factors determining proper growth of the fetus, on a par with the mother’s income and education.
Lead researcher S. V. Subramanian of the Harvard School of Public Health pointed out that scientists hadn’t studied the effect of the mother’s height (as one of health factors) on her baby’s health and sturdiness before.
Thus, nutrition in adolescence becomes the focus point if we are to have taller adults and more robust children, scientists say, coupled with later marriages and childbirth.
Subramanian also stresses the social significance of the results. “We need to focus on interventions that have an intergenerational payoff, which happens only when you invest in children — especially girl children between ages 5 and 15.”
Source of the image: sxc.hu/profile/christgr.