Friday, January 26, 2007

Emma Bunton announces pregnancy

Former Spice Girl Emma Bunton has announced she is expecting a baby with her partner, Jade Jones, a former member of boy band Damage.

The 31-year-old, who came third in BBC One show Strictly Come Dancing, has been dating Jones, 27, for eight years.

Bunton, commonly known as Baby Spice, said: "I guess I will be handing over the 'Baby' tag now to a deserving little new owner."

It is thought the baby is due sometime in the summer.


In a statement, the couple said: "We are so happy, it's unbelievable news. What a great start to the New Year."

Bunton recently revealed she been had diagnosed with endometriosis, a condition which can make it difficult to conceive.

In a magazine interview last month, she said: "I went back to my doctors recently, and they seemed to think it was easing off, which would make it hopeful for me to have children."


Bunton recently reached number three in the charts with her own version of the '60s classic Downtown, for Children in Need.

Bunton is not the only pregnant Spice Girl, as Mel B is expecting her second child in the spring.

She says the father is actor Eddie Murphy - but he has demanded paternity tests.

Geri Halliwell gave birth to her first child, Bluebell Madonna, eight months ago and Victoria Beckham has three children, Brooklyn, Romeo and Cruz.



Thursday, January 25, 2007

Katie Couric on her unexpected breakfast interruption and more

Katie Couric has said one of the incentives for her to accept the anchor position at CBS Evening Newswas being able to have breakfast with her daughters, Ellie, 15, and Carrie, 12, after having missed out on it during her 15-year tenure at Today. However, she tells Reader's Digest that someone else is missing from the breakfast table nowadays - Ellie, who spends the morning straightening her hair. "Sometimes it's just cereal, but it is fun to be with them and have a bit more of a normal routine. But it is not quite as richly fulfilling as maybe I had imagined. They are rushing around. Ellie, who is 15, spends most of her morning flat-ironing her hair, so I don't get to see her as much as I'd like. I usually take her food to her room because it's an involved process, that flat-ironing business." The girls do wait for Katie, 50, to come home for dinner, though, because she feels it's important for the family to have dinner together, "even if it's just talking about the brown rice that's overcooked." While it cuts into their meals and time together, her daughters are proud of what their mother has accomplished in her career. Carrie selected Katie for a school project in which she had to interview someone who is making a difference in the world. "She said, 'My mom has shown that a woman can do anything a man can do and that, when you're faced with obstacles, if you put your mind to it, you can overcome them.' " Katie, who lost her husband Jay Monahan to colon cancer in 1998, also discusses the hardships of being a single parent, particularly noting the "grossly insensitive" father-daughter nights at school. She reveals in the Q & A that she would love for her daughters to have two parents, but would never rush into a relationship just to give them a father figure. Ellie and Carrie do have someone else to lean on in their home - their nanny, Lori Beth, who Katie credits with helping her balance her career and her family. So important is she to them that Katie is extending an invitation to Lori Beth's husband to move into their home when she gets married. "Otherwise, I would miss her horribly. The girls would too." Source:Reader's Digest Source

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

Tall pregnant women who exercise have lighter babies

Taller women who participate in regular physical exercise during pregnancy may deliver lighter babies, but still within the "normal" birth weight range, which could have health benefits for the baby and the mother, a study shows.

"Our findings support that healthy pregnant women, with no obstetric complications, can perform appropriate physical activity during pregnancy and does not adversely affect birth weight," study chief Dr. Cooker C. D. Perkins from Pepperdine University, Malibu, California, told Reuters Health.

"In fact, physical activity may positively affect birth weight, and subsequently positively affect labor, in taller women," she added.

In 51 healthy, nonsmoking women, Perkins and colleagues examined the potential impact of physical activity during pregnancy on infant birth weight and compared that to well-established predictors of birth weight, such as weight gain during pregnancy and maternal height.

As expected, they found a relationship between physical activity during pregnancy and lower birth weight. Women who were active tended to have smaller babies compared with women who were not active.

On closer look, the relationship between physical activity during pregnancy and birth weight was only truly evident in the women who were taller than the average height of the group -- those who were taller than about 5 feet 5 inches.

"The obvious answer would be that the taller women were more active, but it was not the case in our subjects," said Perkins. One possible explanation may be that in shorter women, there is less room for the baby to grow in excess.

The shorter women, whether physically active or sedentary, had babies about the same size, and the physically active, taller women also had babies about the same size. However, taller, sedentary women had larger babies than the other three groups (taller active, shorter active, and shorter sedentary).

"This could mean that being sedentary is a risk factor for excess fetal growth in tall women whose frames may allow for the additional fetal growth," Perkins said. Because higher infant birth weight "has been related to labor complications, perhaps tall and sedentary is a risk for labor complications."

Perkins emphasized that all of the women delivered healthy, normal-weight babies, regardless of their physical activity level. "However, differences in birth weight, even when within the range of 'normal' may predispose a child for certain health outcomes."

For example, the difference in birth weights of the women with the lowest and the highest level of physical activity - about 600 grams -- has been associated with blood pressure differences when the child reaches adulthood, Perkins and colleagues note.


SOURCE: Obstetrics and Gynecology, January 2007.