Aug 7, 2013

Scientists Say If We Smoke While Pregnant, Our Grandchildren Will Have Asthma

Talk about generational curse!

Scientists from the Los Angeles Biomedical Research Institute have found that if we smoke while we're pregnant, we are putting at higher risk for asthma not just our children but also our grandchildren – even if our grandchildren are never exposed to first- or second-hand smoke.

According to the researchers, when a mother smokes during pregnancy, the nicotine causes a change in the fetus' genes, forming a genetic characteristic that makes the baby more prone to asthma. The scientists also found that the this new genetic characteristic is not only present in the fetus but also transmitted to the third generation.

"Even though there are multiple causes for childhood asthma, research linking this serious chronic condition to maternal nicotine exposure during pregnancy for up to three generations should give mothers-to-be even more reasons to reconsider smoking," said the study's lead author Virender K. Rehan.

Of course, it should not take a study like this to convince us mothers to not smoke while we are pregnant or have children in the house.

But if previous warnings were not enough, perhaps this prospect of punishing even our innocent grandchildren by our reckless actions should cause us parents to think twice before lighting up.

The study was done using "a well-established rat model of nicotine exposure." Here's the full abstract of the study: Perinatal Nicotine-Induced Transgenerational Asthma. (Access to the full text requires a subscription to the American Journal of Physiology - Lung Cellular and Molecular Physiology.)

The Nanay Notebook is written by Blessie Adlaon, a work-at-home and homeschooling mom of four. Check out our About page to know more about this blog's author and our policies on advertising, press releases, and reposting.

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