Researchers Discover Having More Kids Slows Aging Process
Good news for JewishMOMs who have or want to have big families!
A 13-year research study conducted by Simon Fraser University and the University of British Columbia has discovered that having more kids actually slows down the aging process.
According to an article about the study which appeared in The Atlantic, 13 years ago researchers swabbed the cheeks of 75 women living in rural Guatemala and then measured the length of their DNA’s telomeres (the protective caps at the end of chromosomes, sort of like the hard plastic ends of a shoelace). As organisms age, as a general rule the telomeres shorten, which means the chromosomes fray and cells age.
But after researchers recently returned to swab the cheeks of those same women, they were surprised to discover that the telomeres of women with many children were longer than the women with few or no children. Meaning, it seems, that by having more children they actually slowed down the aging process.
Professor Pablo Nepomnaschy suggests the following explanation, “The slower pace of telomere shortening…may be attributed to the dramatic increase in estrogen, a hormone produced during pregnancy. Estrogen functions as a potent antioxidant that protects cells.”
In other words, scientists have discovered the Fountain of Youth, and it is the first mitzvah in the Torah–“Pru Urvu,” be fruitful and multiply!