Friday, May 08, 2009

Mary Stuart Masterson Expecting First Child

Actress Mary Stuart Masterson was thrilled to reveal that she's pregnant with her first child! The star broke the news to Life & Style last night at the Rainforest Alliance 2009 annual gala in New York City.

The actress, 42, is due in October.

"I've been trying to get pregnant for a long time," revealed Mary, who's been married to fellow actor Jeremy Davidson since 2006. "I'm ready, I'm excited!"

While she doesn't know the baby's sex yet, "I'll definitely find out soon," she said. As for decorating the nursery? "I haven't started any of that yet. All of it is internal at this point."

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Milla Jovovich Says Pregnancy Opened Her Eyes

When it came time to deliver daughter Ever Gabo, now 18 months, Milla Jovovich was 75 lbs. heavier than when she began — and feeling great!

“You know, I have to say, my pregnancy for me was amazing,” she tells PEOPLE in their Beauty After Baby special. “I really felt great, I was really happy. I gained 75 lbs. but that didn’t stop me from … feeling really beautiful.”

The model, actress and clothing designer ran into some unexpected negativity from others though. She explains, “By the time I had my baby I weighed 197 lbs.! For the first time I understood what it felt like to be a heavier person. I would go into a store and the saleclerks would give me an attitude, or sneer because I was asking for a size they didn’t carry.

I never expected people to be so judgmental of a pregnant woman! It changed my views of being beautiful, because in my eyes I was beautiful.”

After Ever’s birth on November 4th, 2007, Milla decided it was time to lose the weight — and that meant a major adjustment in the kind of foods she was eating!

“A lot more diet, a lot more exercise,” she laughs. “Definitely having a baby completely changes a woman’s body so I’ve just had to be a lot more strict about what I eat and just keep the food really healthy rather than my old chili cheeseburger diet I used to have!”

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Thursday, May 07, 2009

Taking probiotics during pregnancy 'can reduce obesity in mothers'

Women who take probiotics during their first trimester of pregnancy may be less likely to suffer from the most unhealthy form of obesity after giving birth, according to research.

Probiotics are bacteria that help to maintain a bacterial balance in the digestive tract by reducing the growth of harmful bacteria. They are part of the normal digestive system and play a role in controlling inflammation.

Kirsi Laitinen, a nutritionist and senior lecturer at the University of Turku, said that the results of the study, presented today at the European Congress on Obesity, were an encouraging sign of the impact of a diet supplemented with probiotics on adiposity. Adiposity, or central obesity, is a particularly unhealthy form of obesity associated with fat bellies.

“The women who got the probiotics fared best,” she said. “One year after childbirth, they had the lowest levels of central obesity as well as the lowest body fat percentage.

“We found [adiposity] in 25 per cent of the women who had received the probiotics along with dietary counselling, compared with 43 per cent of the women who received diet advice alone.”

In the study, 256 women were randomly divided into three groups during the first trimester of pregnancy.

Two of the groups received dietary counselling consistent with what is recommended during pregnancy for healthy weight gain and optimal foetal development. They were also given food such as spreads and salad dressings with monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, as well as fibre-enriched pasta and breakfast cereal to take home.

One of those groups also received daily capsules of probiotics containing Lactobacillus and Bifidobacterium, which are the most commonly used probiotics. The other group received dummy capsules.

A third group received dummy capsules and no dietary counselling. The capsules were continued until the women stopped exclusive breastfeeding, after up to six months.

The researchers weighed the women at the start of the study. At the end of the study they weighed them again and measured their waist circumference and skin fold thickness.

Central obesity — defined as a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or more or a waist circumference over 80 centimetres — was found in 25 per cent of the women who had been given the probiotics as well as diet advice.

That compared with 43 per cent of the women who got dietary counselling alone and 40 per cent of the women who got neither diet advice nor probiotics.

One of the limitations of the study was that it did not take into account the mothers’ weight before pregnancy, which may influence how fat they later become.

Laitinen said that she and her colleagues would continue to follow the women and their babies to see whether giving probiotics during pregnancy had any influence on the health of the women’s children.

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Wednesday, May 06, 2009

Pregnancy tips from Kelly Rutherford

With just a month to go until she delivers her second child — a baby girl whose name is being kept under wraps until her debut — Kelly Rutherford is placing the finishing touches on her daughter’s nursery.

With the worries of a nursery checked off her list, Kelly — who once feared she was having twins after getting “big really fast” — has instead been focusing her time getting her 2 ½-year-old son Hermés Gustaf Daniel used to the idea of big brotherhood.

One lesson that seems to have gone over well for the toddler? The mystery of breast pumps! “The other day we were at The Pump Station [and] he wanted to figure out how the breast pump was working, of course the mechanics of it, [and I said], ‘This is for milk,’ and then I try to explain that you can help me give the bottle and Mommy can pump and it’s hysterical,” Kelly laughs.

Since becoming a mom, the Gossip Girl actress is an open book of information! With her favorite products including Aquaphor — a cream that does it all from dealing with “diaper rash or any kind of” irritated skin to keeping “your skin nice” — and Seventh Generation diapers — a product she “could not live without” — Kelly has even acquired a few tricks to deal with the struggles of pregnancy. Suffering from leg cramps? Eat a few bananas and drink some coconut milk, says Kelly! “I buy the whole coconut at Whole Foods and put a straw in it and just drink the milk,” she shares. “I have one almost every night before I go to bed.”

Despite her new found knowledge of everything baby, Kelly admits that her greatest piece of advice came from none other than her own mother. “My mom was very open with us and treated us when we were kids with so much respect for what we had to say and listened to us,” she says. ”I think especially when they are little to take the time … to listen and explain I think they don’t go through so many dramas in the terrible twos or the teens.” Believing that the majority of outbursts from children are a result of pent-up frustration from being denied the opportunity to express their independence, Kelly has made it her priority to be present for her son.

“I didn’t just let my son cry. If he was in the stroller and didn’t want to be in the stroller, I carried him. If he cried, I picked him up. I didn’t do that whole let him cry thing.”

Hermés and baby-on-the-way are Kelly’s kids with estranged husband Daniel Giersch.

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Tuesday, May 05, 2009

Scientists say they've found a link between long life and late childbirth

A new study of genealogical records from Utah pioneers and settlers of Montreal, Canada, reveals that women who had babies naturally in their 40s and 50s lived longer than other women.

The brothers of those women also lived longer.

Such findings suggest the same genes prolong lifespan and female fertility and lead researchers to believe there is a strong genetic component for longevity in humans, said Ken R. Smith, professor of family and consumer studies at the University of Utah.

"If you have a female relative who had children after age 45, then there may be some genetic benefit in your family that will enhance your longevity," he said.

Smith is the lead researcher in the study that will be published June 10 in the Journal of Gerontology: Biological Sciences. It already can viewed online at the journal's Web site.

Evolutionary biologists long have argued that survival and reproduction are intrinsically linked, Smith said.

"So, the novel finding in this paper is discovering this link in humans before modern contraception."

The team of researchers from the U. of U., University of Western Ontario, and the University of Montreal also considered the wives of the brothers to determine whether the longevity could be attributed to environmental conditions, such as food, shelter and disease. But the wives --- who were not blood relatives --- did not lead longer lives.

That, too, points to a strong genetic component for longevity, Smith said. If environmental factors were as important, the spouses should live as long as their husbands.

The Utah pioneers were largely British and Scandinavian, while the Montreal settlers were French. But the research team found the same trends in those very different populations, revealing the thesis that links late motherhood to longevity is sound, Smith said.

Pioneer women used no contraception and typically had large families. In many cases, they gave birth until they were no longer able. The study considers reproduction in pioneer women as an indicator of overall health, Smith noted.

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Monday, May 04, 2009

Denmark's French-born princess gives birth to son

Denmark's royal palace says French-born Princess Marie has given birth to her first child, a son.

The palace says Prince Joachim was present during the birth early Monday, and that the 33-year-old princess and her son are both doing fine.

It says the baby weighs 6.67 pounds (3 kilograms) and measures 19.6 inches (49 centimeters).

Joachim and Marie married in May 2008. The newborn is the couple's first child, and seventh in line to Denmark's throne.

The 39-year-old Joachim has two sons from a previous marriage with Hong Kong-born Alexandra Manley. The couple divorced in 2005 in the first split in nearly 160 years in Europe's oldest monarchy.

Joachim is Queen Margrethe's youngest son.

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