Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Happy mama, healthy baby

OK, this is totally not as creative as my last post, but important. In my other life as a researcher, I found this article today, recently published in the journal Health Economics. Here is the abstract:

"There is a growing literature showing an association between higher family income and better child health. This paper uses cohort data with rich information on mother's early life events, her health, child-health-related behaviours, and her child's health to examine this association for the UK and to identify some of the mechanisms through which income affects child health. The paper examines the cross-sectional association between income and health, finds the expected association, but concludes that the association with current income cannot be distinguished from one between permanent income and child health. It then focuses on the mechanisms by which income translates into better child health; these include parental behaviours that may affect child health and parental health, including maternal mental health. Controlling for these factors, there is almost no direct impact of income. A significant role is played by mother's own health, particularly her mental health. No clear role is played by child-health production behaviours of the mother. Examining the maternal mental health-child health link in more detail suggests a role for maternal anxiety and somaticism."

More evidence for the "happy mother, happy baby" hypothesis, and more reason for us mama types to take good care of ourselves!


boogiemum (www.boogiemum.com) said...

So true. I kind of reflected on this same issue yesterday, taking care of ourselves by taking a few minutes of silence. Something I need to do more of on a consistent basis.

Alex Elliot said...

It really is true. I think it's one of those things though that is easier said than done.