From eating healthy, to exercising, to stress — there are plenty of things we consider factors in living a long and healthy life. Well, now we have another one to add to the mix. New research is showing that women who naturally conceive children later tend to lead longer lives.
The study, published this week in the journal Menopause was conducted by researchers at Boston University School of Medicine, who examined data from 462 women.
They found that women who conceived naturally after the age of 33 were twice as likely to live to age 95 as women who had stopped having babies before turning 30. Amazingly, this held true even when factors like smoking and obesity were taken into account.
This isn’t to say that conceiving when you’re older causes you to live a longer life. More likely, says professor of medicine at Boston University and co-author of the study Dr. Thomas Perls, “The natural ability to have a child at an older age likely indicates that a woman’s reproductive system is aging slowly, and therefore so is the rest of her body.”
"Of course, this does not mean women should wait to have children at older ages in order to improve their own chances of living longer," he explained. Rather, "the age at last childbirth can be a rate of aging indicator."