At what age did you give birth to your last child? What does this mean for your health?
New study links a woman's childbearing age to her long-term health and longevity
No one can know for sure how long he will live. A new study, however, suggests that leukocyte telomere length may provide some useful insights into a woman's longevity and more clearly show that the age of the mother at the birth of her last child affects these telomere length and long-term health. .
According to a study published in Menopause, this is not the first time that a woman's white blood cell telomere length has been linked to her estimated life expectancy. Telomeres repeat DNA protein complexes that protect the end of chromosomes and have been shown to be vital in maintaining gene stability. Previous studies have suggested a link between telomere length and various chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, some neurological diseases and various types of cancer.
A smaller study had previously suggested that the age of the mother at the birth of her last child affected the length of the telomeres. This new large-scale study, therefore, included more than 1.200 premenopausal and postmenopausal women of various nationalities and with diverse social and economic backgrounds from the American National Institutes of Health and Nutrition, and, unlike previous work, took into account social and demographic factors related to childbearing patterns and health decisions.
He thus confirmed that maternal age at the last delivery is positively related to telomere length, which means that women who give birth to their last child at an older age are more likely to have longer telomeres, which are a biomarker of long-term health and longevity. This finding, however, was limited to women who had one or two births or were taking contraceptives.
"Even more research is needed to determine if the mother's age at the last delivery causes the telomeres to lengthen or if their length can guarantee general health and correspond to a woman's ability to have children at an older age," she said. Stephanie Faubion, director of the Menopause Society of North America.