Having a baby in your thirties can mean you live longer. A scientific study has revealed that women who had children later were more likely to live longer than those who gave birth in their teens and 20s.
The study, published in the Journal of Public Health, reports that “As the age of pregnancy increases so does the life expectancy of women at 65. In other words, the older the women are at birth, the longer they live.
“Women who give birth later tend to live longer and the genes that allow for later pregnancy benefit female life span”
The survey was conducted by researchers from the University of Coimbra in Portugal, who examined birth and life-expectancy data from all European Union nations, including the UK.
NHS specialists have previously warned Britain is facing a ‘fertility time bomb’ because women are having children at a much later age than in previous generations.
The average age for a woman to have her first baby in the UK is now 30. One in 25 of all UK births is to a mother over 40. While it is unclear why women who have children later live for longer some experts suggest that their personal background plays a big role.
Fertility expert Lord Winston said: ”There are several reasons why this could be the case. Women who give birth later in life tend to be of a higher social standing and have a better income. They could find it easier to conceive later in life because of social circumstances, and it is well-known that people who have a higher level of education are usually in a higher income bracket and have greater longevity because they can afford to lead healthier lifestyles.”
Raj Mathur, policy advisor for the British Fertility Society, said: “It is interesting that, as women are having children later, they are also living longer. But we should be careful not to use this data to delay child-bearing because women who try to have children in their 30s and 40s are more likely to struggle”