National Catholic Register

Culture of Life

Womb Discoveries

Fact of Life

BY The Editors

October 24-November 6, 2010 Issue | Posted 10/15/10 at 12:50 PM


A recent Time cover story, “How the First Nine Months Shape the Rest of Your Life,” reported, “The nutrition you received in the womb; the pollutants, drugs and infections you were exposed to during gestation; your mother’s health and state of mind while she was pregnant with you — all these factors shaped you as a baby and continue to affect you to this day.

“This is the provocative contention of a field known as fetal origins, whose pioneers assert that the nine months of gestation constitute the most consequential period of our lives, permanently influencing the wiring of the brain and the functioning of organs such as the heart, liver and pancreas. In the literature on the subject, which has exploded over the past 10 years, you can find references to the fetal origins of cancer, cardiovascular disease, allergies, asthma, hypertension, diabetes, obesity, mental illness.”

Catholics have always known about fetal origins: We’re created by God in his image and likeness.