New study finds having a baby boy may be more stressful on a mother's body

Simone Olivero
(Getty)
(Getty)

Even if it’s true that boys are easier to raise than girls, a new study has found that it doesn’t necessarily start out that way.

According to Javier Diaz-Castro, a researcher from the University of Granada in Spain, giving birth to a boy may actually put more stress on a woman’s body than giving birth to a girl does.

“In terms of the response in the mother’s body, having a girl causes less inflammation,” Diaz-Castro tells the Daily Mail.

The study examined 56 healthy, pregnant women (27 who had boys and 29 who had girls). By analyzing blood taken from the umbilical cords and the babies, scientists discovered more free radicals in the sampling from the boys, which led to higher oxidative stress levels in moms — this occurs when the body doesn’t have enough antioxidants to fight off free radicals. In fact, women who had boys experienced increased inflammation causing their bodies to respond as if they were infected.

“After having a baby girl the female body will be better adjusted,” Diaz-Castro said.

While doctor’s claim this doesn’t have an effect on the pain of actual child birth, it could be linked to moms who give birth to boys having worse overall health, as oxidative stress has been linked to conditions such as heart disease, Alzheimer’s and depression.

Our findings open a new, exciting field of research centered on the neonate’s [newborn’s] sex as a risk factor for several functional alterations, with a great impact on the development of pathologies in the future.”

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