Why keeping your feet up when you’re a mum-to-be is so important! –

A study published Monday suggests prenatal stress in pregnant women may affect the sex of the baby and be associated with some forms of birth complications.

Researchers at Columbia University and NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital found that stressed mothers are less likely to give birth to a male child.

The findings, which were published in the National Academy of Sciences’ official peer-reviewed journal PNAS, were based on data gathered from 187 pregnant women divided into three groups: healthy women (66.8% of the study), psychologically stressed women who were found to have depression and anxiety (17.1%) and physically stressed women found to have higher blood pressure and higher caloric intake (16%).

Physically stressed mothers also were more likely to have premature births and decreased fetal heart rate and movement, which researchers suggest may affect central nervous system development. All of the women had healthy pregnancies.

“The womb is an influential first home, as important as the one a child is raised in, if not more so,” said lead author Catherine E. Monk, professor of medical psychology at Columbia University, in a statement.

Source: Pregnant mothers’ stress levels can affect sex of baby, study says