In the following 2011 TED talk, science reporter, author, and mother Annie Murphy Paul discusses the latest scientific evidence gathered from the fields of biology and psychology suggesting that some of our most important learning about the world happens before we are even born.
An emerging field known as Fetal Origins posits that what we experience in the womb can be a significant predictor of our health and well being for the rest of our lives. Some of the most interesting stories Paul shares in this talk involve maternal nutrition and emotions, particularly in the third trimester, and how these have a lifelong influence on baby.
Far from using this information to cast blame or judgment on expectant mothers, the speaker hopes this fascinating area of discovery will help us promote greater health in future generations. We’d add to that the hope that it may improve the quality of women’s experiences in pregnancy and foster greater care and support of pregnant mamas, not only for the wellbeing of their babies, but for the mamas too.