Anorexia Linked To Spring Birth
According to a new study, babies who are born in spring are more prone to develop anorexia when they grow up than children who are born in autumn, for instance.
According to what the researchers said, sunlight, temperature, mother’s diet and infections are the factors that contribute most to the development of this eating disorder in children. However, other researchers said that these findings are not so important, as anorexia nervosa can have many more causes. Anorexia nervosa is an eating disorder which is characterized by fear of gaining weight and the refusal to maintain a healthy body weight. Anorexia is most often found in teenagers. This period in their life is very hard and given that peer pressure is exercised at such high levels, teenage girls tend to develop this disorder. Given that anorexia nervosa may lead to serious psychological problems, the treatment for the disorder extends on three levels. First the patient must be brought to his or her normal weight, then any kind of psychological disorder must be treated and then, any thoughts or behaviors that lead to the anorexia in the first place must be reduced, if not eliminated altogether.
The researchers have analyzed data from previous studies and it included 1,293 people who suffered from anorexia. According to the results of the study, people who were born in months starting March to June were more prone to develop this eating disorder. Fewer cases were seen in months like September and October. According to Dr Lahiru Handunnetthi, one of the report’s authors, at the Wellcome Trust Centre for Human Genetics, previous studies have shown that disorders such as schizophrenia or the bipolar disorder were also found more common among people who were born in spring and he said that the fact that anorexia was found more in people born in spring was not very surprising. “However, our study only provides evidence of an association. Now we need more research to identify which factors are putting people at particular risk,” he said. According to the researchers, the amount of light, the temperature and the amount of vitamin D the mother is exposed to during this period of the year are highly important in determining whether her baby will develop the eating disorder in the future or not. However, anorexia is a very complex disorder and there are many more factors which should be taken into account. This study was only made to show a correlation between the eating disorder and the babies born in spring.
For instance, a couple of years ago, researchers at the University of Pittsburgh found out that anorexia had something to do with the production of serotonin, the chemical linked to mood and anxiety. The researchers measured the amount of serotonin produced by the brain and what they discovered was that women who were more anxious and more prone to develop an eating disorder (especially anorexia), had higher levels of serotonin produced in their brain. The team of researchers at the University of Pittsburgh were trying to find better methods of treating all these eating disorders.11