Moms Who Give Birth at Older Age Live Longer
Study: Those who conceive naturally after 33 more likely to live into 90s
By John Johnson, Newser Staff
Posted Jun 25, 2014 2:07 PM CDT

(Newser) – Women who are able to get pregnant naturally and give birth in their mid-30s and after tend to live longer than other women, a new study suggests. Specifically, Boston researchers found that women who gave birth after age 33 were twice as likely to live to 95 than women who were done having kids at 29, reports Medical Daily. So what kind of effect should this have on a young couple's family planning? Not much, the co-author of the study in the journal Menopause tells the Boston Globe. “Women shouldn’t delay child-bearing based on this study,” says Thomas Perls. But he hopes it will get people to stop second-guessing women who become pregnant in middle age.

"Critics say they’ll be too old to care for their teens or help raise their grandchildren," says Perls, "but I would wager that these women are aging exceptionally well.” One caveat: The extra longevity doesn't apply to women who use IVF or other technologies to get pregnant. So what's going on? Researchers think that women who are able to get pregnant and conceive at older ages have "genetic variants" that slow down their own aging, reports Counsel & Heal. What's more, by reproducing longer, they have a better chance of passing along those genes. "This possibility may be a clue as to why" many more women than men live to hit the century mark, says Perls. (Click to read about a woman who gave birth via IVF using her own 46-year-old egg.)

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Cathy Adams
Jul 25, 2014 6:26 PM CDT
My great grandmother had 4 babies by natural childbirth past the age of 40. Her last baby was born to her when she was 52. She also had 5 daughters born before she was 30. All were born by natural child birth. No drugs were used and no C-sections were performed. There were no spinal blocks or episiotomies either. She died at the age of 98. She lived to see ALL 9 of her children grow up and have babies of their own. She also passed the "longevity" gene down to ALL of her kids. They ALL made it to their 90th birthdays. Three of them made it past 95 and are still alive and well. One of them is my grandmother.
Jul 14, 2014 11:15 AM CDT
My wife got pregnant at 38 and 42 without IVF or viagra and have 2 very smart kids with no defects. The Drs kept telling us that the odds were high for birth defects. Glad they were wrong. Now I can tell my wife about this study and maybe she will stop being so pessimistic about dying due to getting pregnant, something her mother fed her growing up.
Jul 10, 2014 10:40 AM CDT
I got pregnant naturally with identical twin girls at 41 and gave birth at 42. The chance of having twins is higher the older you are. We chose not to have any testing done for birth defects. We thought the risks of the testing were too high, and we did not see the point. We knew regardless we would still want our babies. Thankfully they were healthy and now 4 years old. But, that being said, being older it does take a toll on your body, especially after having twins. It has taken me 4 years just to get back to normal, and by normal I mean how I was before I was pregnant. Don't compare to Hollywood moms who are in their 40's having babies. They are not the norm.................they have the money for experts such as trainers, chefs and nannies to help them. I am happy to read that I could possibly live a long life and be around for my girls.