IVF and birth defects, premature babies and jogging for health
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Babies conceived through In Vitro Fertilization or IVF may have a higher risk of birth defects than those conceived naturally. But the increased risk may stem from the parents rather than the treatment itself. That's according to a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine which found the risk of birth defects to be 26 percent higher with IVF than with unassisted conception.
But virtually all of the increased risk could be attributed to the health and demographic profile of the mother, including her age and socioeconomic status.
More than 15 million babies are born prematurely each year and the United States fared badly in the first country-by-country comparison. The study by the World Health Organization and other organizations suggests too many American women have health problems like obesity, diabetes, high blood pressure and smoking.
Other factors include teen pregnancy or women older than 35 giving birth to twins or triplets after In Vitro Fertilization. The report took three years and is the first to compare premature birth rates in 184 countries.
If you want live a little longer, a nice jog might help you with that. One recent heart study found that jogging regularly adds a little more than six years to the life expectancy of men and about five-and-a-half years for women.
The study found running between one and two-and-a-half hours a week at a slow or average pace would do the job.