Scientists warn mothers to avoid caesarean births

Scientists warn mothers to avoid caesarean births

Scientists warn mothers to avoid giving birth by caesarean because it increases the child’s risk of obesity and disease

  • Research shows the first bacteria newborns come into contact with play role
  • Lifelong health is determined as they pick up bacteria along the birth canal 
  • Professor Tim Spector, of King’s College London, said more awareness needed 

Mothers should avoid having caesarean sections because they increase children’s risk of obesity and disease, scientists have said.

Research shows that the first bacteria newborns come into contact with play a major role in determining lifelong health.

Babies born naturally are exposed to a range of beneficial bacteria while moving down the birth canal. But children who are delivered by caesarean are not exposed to these microbes, putting them at risk of weight gain, asthma and immune disorders.

Research shows that the first bacteria newborns come into contact with play a major role in determining lifelong health

Professor Tim Spector, of King’s College London, said more awareness is needed of the ‘downsides’ of caesareans – which now make up one quarter of births in Britain.

Speaking at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists’ conference in London, he said: ‘Every mammal gets its microbes when they pass through the birth canal.’

He said that obesity is not determined by calorie intake but by these microbes, adding: ‘The more diverse microbes you have inside you, the healthier you are.’ 

Professor Tim Spector, of King’s College London, said more awareness is needed of the ‘downsides’ of caesareans – which now make up one quarter of births in Britain

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