Pregnancy has a strange effect on your biological age

There’s an obvious, dramatic physical transformation that takes place during pregnancy – and a new study has shown that pregnancy has an unexpected impact on women’s biological age.

According to new research published in Cell Metabolism, pregnancy moves the body’s biological clock forward by a number of years.

However, the effects are then reversed after the baby is born.

The study looked into molecular aging, which measures the damage human cells take over time, as a result of pregnancy.

Perhaps surprisingly, people who breastfed their babies were able to reverse the molecular ageing at a faster rate.

pregnancy has a strange effect on your biological age

(iStock)

The study saw experts analyse blood samples from 120 during various stages of pregnancy. Around 65 of the women involved also provided samples after giving birth.

Kieran O’Donnell is the study’s senior author and a professor of medicine at the Yale School of Medicine. O’Donnell said: “In a period of approximately 20 weeks, when we collected the samples in early to late pregnancy, genetic biomarkers were increasing by around one to two years, suggesting an increase in biological aging.”

O’Donnell added: “What was very surprising to us was the pronounced reversal of biological age at three months postpartum.”

The effect is such that “individuals at three months postpartum were looking biologically younger than at late pregnancy.”

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