Most people love the idea of having a baby in the summer: warmer weather for recovery, fun stroller walks in the sun, and an easier time to pack up your baby for excursions (without having to overly bundle them up). According to a study coming out of the United Kingdom, summer babies are also more likely to become healthier adults. Increased sunlight may be the key to this, as researchers reviewed data from close to half a million people in the UK.
The results? It appears that babies born in the summer months (June, July, and August) had an overall healthier birth weight and height, which builds on other research that has come to the conclusion that the summertime just might be the perfect time to have a baby.
As it seems, a healthy birth weight for infants range from 5.5 to 8.8 pounds; and summer babies tend to fall into this category. Babies born weighing less than 5.5 pounds are at risk of infection and potential long-term issues, including delayed motor skills and social development, and may have learning disabilities as they grow. Past studies have also concluded that babies born underweight are more likely to drop out of school, which also can affect future career success. Alternatively, infants that have an over-average birth weight can also increase their chances of leukemia (compared to average weight babies), and increase their risk of obesity, diabetes, and metabolic syndrome.
CNN notes that the study notes that summer babies are also more likely to be taller. Past studies have revealed that shorter people tend to be more susceptible to heart disease, Alzheimer’s, and strokes. According to past research, taller individuals are prone for success: more likely to step into leadership roles, gain promotions, make more money, and get asked on more dates.
The study also notes that female infants born in the summer are more likely to start puberty later in life. Those who hit puberty before 10 years of age, a termed referred to by doctors as precocious puberty, can create emotional and mental health struggles for young kids. Research has indicated that early puberty in females increases the risk of obesity, metabolic syndrome, type 2 diabetes, as well as cardiovascular disease as they grow into adults.
While the team wasn’t sure of the root cause of why summer babies are overall healthier, researchers speculate that it may have to do with the exposure to increased sunlight. The team also notes that babies born in the other months of the year are not ‘doomed’, as there are many other factors that can affect future health.