Study Links Late Motherhood To A Longer Life

May 4, 2009

Utah (ChattahBox) – A new study conducted by the University of Utah has found a link between life span and late birth.

According to the study, women who give birth naturally in their 40’s or 50’s actually have a longer lifespan, and that same genetic trait may also be present in those women’s blood brothers.

“If you have a female relative who had children after age 45, then there may be some genetic benefit in your family that will enhance your longevity,” Professor Ken Smith, the study’s lead researcher, explained.

Records from Utah and Quebec were both examined, and the result compared. In most cases, women who had children after the age of 45 had a 14% – 17% longer lifespan, pointing to greater longevity. This seems to decrease the importance of environmental factors, which used to be considered the greatest dictator of the average age of death.

“The new thing here is what most evolutionary biologists long have argued: that survival and reproduction are intrinsically linked to one another,” Smith said.

“So the novel finding in this paper is discovering this link in humans before modern contraception.”

Because environment could still be an issue, the wives of the women’s brothers were also examined, and records seem to indicate that they, while living in the same environment, died at much younger ages then the late-mothers.

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