Reproductive health

Factors relating to reproductive health in women may predict life expectancy

(Piotr Redlinski/The New York Times)

A new study has found that factors relating to a woman’s reproductive health, such as the age at which a woman has her first period or child, may correlate with her risk of dying early. The study found that girls who started menstruating at 15 or older had a 10 percent lower risk of dying than those who had their first period at age 12 or younger; women who first had kids between 26 and 30 were about 10 percent less likely to die than women who first had kids at 20 years or younger or at 31 and older; women who breastfed had an eight percent lower risk of dying than women who never breastfed, and women who had ever taken birth control pills were 10 percent less likely to die than women who had not. The true significance of these statistics will need to be confirmed with further studies — the numbers may inadvertently be tied to factors such as socioeconomic status, for example — but researchers hope that their work can help doctors identify reproductive factors with long-term impacts on women’s health.

Read the full story at Live Science.

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