There is a reason why pregnancy is called a critical as well as a happy stage in a person’s life. This research by scientists at the University of Manchester has revealed that women who attain pregnancy while dieting are likely to put their kids at risk for obesity and diabetes later in life.
As part of the analysis, twin pregnancies in sheep were examined. The pregnancy phases of ewes were inspected while they received less food during conception. Subsequently, the scientists observed the brain tissues of the unborn lambs.
“We found that unborn twin lambs had changes in the structure of DNA in the region of the brain that regulates food intake and glucose that resulted in an increased chance of diabetes in adulthood. Our findings provide a reason why twins are more likely to get diabetes but we have also shown that mothers who don’t have enough food around the time of conception may have a child who grows up with an increased risk of obesity,” commented lead Anne White, Professor of Endocrine Sciences.
The outcomes showed that babies of mothers who ate less during pregnancy apparently manifested certain alterations in their DNA. These changes led to fluctuations in glucose and other hormones related to obesity, putting the lambs at risk for both the metabolic disorders.
While the genetic basis of obesity has gained much prominence in recent days, this trial comes as a reminder that other factors play a significant role too. This report is published in the Journal of the Federation of American Societies for Experimental Biology.