Researchers from the University of Oxford in cooperation with the Universities of Groningen, The Netherlands, and Uppsala, Sweden, have pinpointed 12 DNA areas that are associated with the age at which people usually have their first child and the total number of children during the life course.
For their study, the scientists analyzed 62 databases that included information from 238,064 men and women for age at first birth, and almost 330,000 men and women for the number of children.
Previously, it was believed that the age at which we have the first child is connected to personal choices and social circumstances. But now this new research proves that genetic variations are responsible for this age.
Lead author Professor Melinda Mills, from the Department of Sociology and Nuffield College at the University of Oxford, says: “For the first time, we now know where to find the DNA areas linked to reproductive behaviour. For example, we found that women with DNA variants for postponing parenthood also have bits of DNA code associated with later onset of menstruation and later menopause.”
More information here.
A new study suggests that such mobile devices as smartphones and tablets are harmful to family life as they can distract people from the process of bringing up children, interfering with family routines and creating stressful situations at home.
22 mothers, 9 fathers and 4 grandmothers participated in the study. They were between 23 and 55 years old and cared for toddlers or young children up to age 8.
Spending time in communication with colleagues, friends and the rest of the world affects family mealtime, bedtime and playtime and the result is often a rise in parent-child tension and overall stress, explains Dr. Jenny Radesky, an assistant professor of developmental behavioural paediatrics at the University of Michigan Medical School and a lead author of the study.
More information here.
The latest research from the American Academy of Pediatrics lists family dinner as one of the key strategy people can use to prevent obesity and eating disorders among adolescence.
The report of this study says that eating family dinner together seven or more times per week leads to consuming one serving of fruits and vegetables per day compared to families who had no meals together.
Another research suggests that people who eat mostly home-cooked meals not only eat healthier but also consume nearly 135 fewer calories per day on average compared to people who don’t cook their own meals.
More details here.