Eating Sweet, Fatty Foods During Pregnancy is Linked to ADHD in Children

November 22, 2016 Bailey Kirkpatrick

A high-fat, high-sugar diet during pregnancy could be connected to ADHD in children, suggests new research. A mother’s diet may adjust epigenetic marks that attach to her child’s DNA, potentially increasing the odds that he or she will develop ADHD. Attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder, or ADHD, has become a prevalent condition in modern society as researchers attempt to explain its dramatic rise. As of 2011, around 6.4 million children ages 4 to 17 have been diagnosed with ADHD according to the CDC. [more…]

Maternal Smoking Epigenetically Harms Child Development

April 26, 2016 Bailey Kirkpatrick

Thankfully, smoking is a habit all pregnant women are advised to break. But, surprisingly, this wasn’t always the case, especially in the 1940s and 1950s when doctors endorsed smoking in tobacco advertisements. Tobacco companies even ran ads hinting that pregnant women could smoke as a way to calm their nerves. With the influx of research on the harms of cigarettes, it now seems absurd to think they were ever recommended. A recent study in American Journal of Human Genetics links [more…]

Children of Diabetic Moms May Benefit from the Epigenetic Power of Green Tea

April 19, 2016 Bailey Kirkpatrick

If a mother with diabetes drinks green tea during pregnancy, could it improve her child’s development? For years, pregnant women have been advised to take probiotics and antioxidants, such as folic acid, to help improve pregnancy outcomes. However, the precise way these supplements work continues to be up for debate. Now, epigenetic evidence is mounting in regard to the benefits of certain antioxidants and the potential underlying biological mechanisms. New research published in the American Journal of Obstetrics & Gynecology [more…]

Affectionate Moms with Depression May Epigenetically Buffer Their Child from Stress

March 8, 2016 Bailey Kirkpatrick

Different environmental factors experienced by a child can undoubtedly impact their life in the long run. Whether they were born into poverty, lack access to education, or are surrounded by violence, these experiences have the ability to dramatically disrupt their lives if they’re without the right support system. But, could a mother’s exposure to stress impact her child even before he or she is born? And could the way a mother treats her child buffer any adverse impact? Research on [more…]

4 Things You’re Forgetting to Thank Mom For This Mother’s Day

May 8, 2014 Bailey Kirkpatrick

We all know the deal by now: On Mother’s Day we should show appreciation for the years our moms spent raising us, for the years she worked patiently to bestow on us the skills we didn’t even know (or maybe refused to believe) we needed to succeed in life. A lot of the things she did for us are easy to give thanks for because we’ve experienced them first-hand throughout our childhood: reassuring words of wisdom, hot meals on the [more…]