Your parents hold clues to your life expectancy, heart health

(CNN)Your parents may have a significant influence on how likely you are to stay healthy later in life.

Scientists have long suspected that the lifespan of parents holds clues to how long their own children will live, and now a new study reveals that parents’ longevity is linked to their offspring’s heart health, too.

    So, long-lived parents may reduce the risk of morbidity and mortality in their kids, according to the study, which was published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology on Monday.



      Do this at 50 and you could live to 100


    “The relationships between parental longevity and the health of kids are likely quite complicated and overlapping. I don’t think that it is ‘all genetics,’ although it is likely that genetic relationships are certainly part of the story,” Langa said.
    “The study showed that children of long-lived parents had higher levels of education, income [and] physical activity and lower prevalence of smoking and obesity, suggesting that in addition to genetic links between the generations, there are likely behavioral links resulting from the home, and more general environment, in which one is raised,” he added.

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    Britt Heidinger, assistant professor in the department of biological sciences at North Dakota State University, agreed that the findings raise interesting questions about how much of the link between parents’ and children’s longevity is due to shared genetic or environmental backgrounds.
    “For example, some of this relationship might be due to inherited factors, but parents and offspring are also likely to share many aspects of their environments that could impact cardiovascular health, including attitudes about diet and exercise,” said Heidinger, who was not involved in the new study. “Although studies have shown links between parental age and offspring longevity, more information is critically needed about the underlying mechanisms.”

    Originally found at

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    Your parents hold clues to your life expectancy, heart health

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