New longevity research declares that babies born today could routinely live to 100-120 years and beyond. Parents need to know how their lifestyle will affect their baby today, tomorrow and for a lifetime.
It’s wise for pregnant moms to reduce and avoid stress. Stress affects longevity by shortening telomeres, the caps on chromosomes. They are considered the timekeepers of the cell and telomere shortening can happen at any age. When umbilical cord blood is drawn from newborns, the babies whose mothers experienced more stress during pregnancy showed shorter telomeres than those moms who experienced easier or less stressful pregnancies.1
If conditions during pregnancy were not ideal, then embracing a healthy lifestyle now with good nutrition, exercise and a balanced spine and nervous system are vital for mom and child, to preserve and optimize their longevity potential while also reducing the risk of degenerative diseases.
The science of epigenetics empowers us with the knowledge that we have greater control over our own and our baby’s destiny than we may have thought. Depending on the research you read, between 5 to 30% of disease development is determined by your genetics while 70% or more being related to your lifestyle choices, how we take care of ourselves today. This is a game changer for making the extra effort to create the healthiest pregnancy, delivery and environment for mom and baby. A vitalistic, less stressful pre and post-natal phase can set the stage for health.
The old saying “you are what you eat” is especially true during pregnancy and quality prenatal supplementation plus eating nutritious whole food is important. Include protein sources rich in omega 3 fatty acids and free from hormones and antibiotics. Eliminate exposure to toxins, pesticides and estrogen mimickers commonly found in plastics, sunscreens, cleaning agents and insecticides. Pesticide exposure can be reduced swiftly by switching to organic foods.
Regular exercise like walking, swimming and stretching prepares the body well for labor. Building strength will prepare mom for the endurance needed during delivery and the weeks following birth.
The structure of the mom’s pelvis can determine her ability to carry and deliver her baby in a healthier way. Lifestyle chiropractic care can align her pelvis and contribute to a delivery with less stress on her and her baby. If mom’s pelvis and/or sacrum are misaligned, abnormal tension can occur in her nerve system leading to unnecessary complications such as breach or transverse presentation, back pain, sciatica or severe ‘back labor’.
Women receiving chiropractic adjustments report shorter labor times and better delivery experiences. Offering the gift of a chiropractic checkup to an expectant mother can be the highlight gift at every baby shower. Proper spinal alignment before, during and after pregnancy sets the stage for mom and baby to live their ideal 100 Year Lifestyle.
1. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2013 Feb;208(2):134.e1-7. doi: 10.1016/j.ajog.2012.11.033. Epub 2012 Nov 27.
Contributed by Drs. David and Lorraine Melendez, 100 Year Lifestyle Affiliates in Cardiff by the Sea, CA