• Andishe Farahmand

Stress can be passed on to your offspring!

Updated: Apr 25


Have you ever heard of the saying "history repeats itself"? When you think about it, YOUR history and your genetic information will be somewhat transferred to your offspring, through an interesting yet complicated gene inheritance process. But you all know this by now...you know that you either look like your mother or father or in extreme cases, you look more closely like a grandparent, in which phenotypes have been skipped a generation and now you resemble a grandparent. You may also take after your parent, in art, the ability to love carpeting just like your dad, or the ability to be a great singer like you mother...again you all know this by now. This is what I mean by "history repeating itself"...we are all repeating history (our parents/grandparents).

However, there are new studies being done, that more than phenotypic inheritance is transferred to the offspring, like stress, depression, and anxiety that you feel as an adult, or even while pregnant. There is evidence to believe BOTH of the parents have the ability to pass on this stress/depression/anxiety to their offspring. This idea is called Epigenetic.

Epigenetics is the study of changes in organisms caused by gene modifications, through other factors such as the environment. Epigenetic effects the chemical marker for the gene, rather the gene itself.

The best evidence and research out there that I used to write this blog on is looking at the pregnant mothers during 9/11 who passed on post-traumatic stress disorder to their children, as well as the holocaust survivors passing depression to their next-generation/offspring.

9/11 and a ripple effect:

I remember watching a documentary about this, and I thought to myself how extremely fascinating it was.

According to Dr. Yehuda, “The findings suggest that mechanisms for transgenerational transmission of biologic effects of trauma may have to do with very early parent-child attachments, and possibly even in utero effects related to cortisol programming.”

Holocaust survivors pass trauma to their offsprings:

The study examined the DNA of Holocaust survivors and compared it to that of their children and found a gene linked to depression and anxiety in both groups.

Here is what you should do:

In my opinion, you can not control certain things, so why worry and stress? Try de-stressing techniques like

1. Art therapy

2. Exercise

3. Nature walks

4. Shower meditation

5. Meditation

6. Yoga

etc...

#genes #DNA #holocaust #911 #depression #anxiety

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Andishe Farahmand | MPH RDN

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