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Home Health Wellness Sun May Determine Lifespan at Birth, Says Study

Sun May Determine Lifespan at Birth, Says Study

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It’s not about how much sun you get... it’s about how lucky this star is for you. When you were born, was the sun calm or feisty? Is this your lucky star that you should be wishing upon?

An unusual study was published in which Norwegian scientists said people born during periods of solar calm may live five years longer than those who are born when the Sun is aggressive, meaning interludes marked by powerful flares and geomagnetic storms. 

The team looked at data of Norwegians born between 1676 and 1878 and focused on observations of the Sun during that time. They found that the lifespan of those born in periods of solar maximum was "5.2 years shorter" on average than those born during a solar minimum. 

"Solar activity at birth decreased the probability of survival to adulthood," thus truncating average lifespan, according to the study published in the journal Proceedings of the Royal Society B.

There was also a stronger effect on girls than boys as well as the classes of population. The Sun has cycles that last 11 years from one period of greatest activity to the next. It also affects women who are born in a solar aggressive period by significantly reducing fertility for those born into the "poor category," but not for wealthier women or men. 

But does this affect men and women of the modern era? It’s not clear if it holds true or not but part of the findings could be attributed to ultraviolet-induced degradation of the B vitamin folate, a shortage of which before birth has been linked to higher rates of illness and death, the team stated.

"Our findings suggest that maternal exposure to solar activity during gestation can affect the fitness of female children," the authors wrote. But they also concluded more research is needed to see if these findings hold true for today. 

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