Dieting around the time of conception can increase obesity and diabetes risk of babies
A recent study has revealed that twins and babies of mothers, who diet during the time of conception and during the early stage of pregnancy, may be more susceptible to obesity and type-2 diabetes throughout their entire life.
This study has provided exciting facts on how can the behavior lead to epigenetic changes in the infant related to obesity and other disease.
"This study may provide a new understanding of why twins can develop diabetes," said Anne White, Ph.D., study author from the Faculty of Life Sciences at the University of Manchester in Manchester, UK.
"It also suggests that dieting around the time a baby is conceived may increase the chance of the child becoming obese later in life."
For this research, White and colleagues conducted experiments on sheep to examine twin pregnancies and the effects of changing nutrition during the time of conception and early stages of pregnancy.
Particularly, the brain tissue of fetus sheep were examined by the scientists before its birth and it was found that there were changes in the genes that are responsible to control food intake and glucose levels that may result to obesity and diabetes.
The findings are unique as the differences that were found in the genes during the study are not the inherited changes in the DNA sequence, but these changes were found epigenetic in nature with alterations in the structure of the DNA and its associated proteins, histones, which affects the way that genes can behave in the later stages of life.
"This study shows that expecting mothers have to walk a really fine line when it comes to diet and nutrition," said Gerald Weissmann, M.D., Editor-in-Chief of the journal.
"It also shows that epigenetics is the 'new genetics': both our DNA and the histones in which it is wrapped are susceptible to binge eating and dieting-we are what our mothers ate," Weissmann added.
The detail of the study has been published online in the FASEB Journal.
-With inputs from ANI
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