With the weather warming up, it’s time to pack a picnic lunch, load up the kayak on a Sunday afternoon, and fall in love with your partner again. If you are preparing to start a family and are trying to conceive (TTC), you may have been told by your doctor to make sure you’re eating healthy […]
The human egg has two main compartments; the nucleus, which contains a person’s DNA (genome – repository of hereditary information) organized into 46 chromosomes of which 23 are inherited from the mother and 23 from the father; and the cytoplasm, which surrounds the nucleus and contains all of the components needed to maintain egg viability and support reproduction. One can visualize the nucleus as the yolk of a sunny-side up egg and the cytoplasm as the egg white. To prepare for fertilization by sperm, the egg discards one member of each of its 23 chromosome pairs (23 discarded) in order to present the correct number to the sperm, which carries 23 chromosomes, the result being a fertilized egg (embryo) containing the normal human complement of 46 chromosomes, 23 from each parent. Discarding one member of each of the 23 chromosome pairs requires a lot of energy
A recent study published in the journal, Menopause, found that women, who had children later in life, were twice as likely to live longer lives (up to age 95). The group of older mothers was compared to a cohort who stopped having children by age 29. The average age of motherhood is increasing as more women delay family building in order to complete educational and professional goals. Egg freezing and egg donation are now allowing women to conceive and carry pregnancies safely into their mid-fifties. Since modern women in industrialized countries are living well into their 80’s, it is reassuring to know that later-in-life pregnancies do not foreshorten longevity.