ENP & Epigenetics: Setting the Foundation for Your Child's Future Health

Environmental factors — especially nutrition — influence at least 80% of our health. This information is based on epigenetics. It explores how cells behave, that is, how the body applies the information in our genes by means of epigenetic processes. Learn more about how you can apply this information to your diet.

The definition of “Epi”

The term “Epi" originates from the Greek and means "outside" or "the environment" 

— "Epigenetics" means "outside of genetics".

Epigenetics researches the changes in our genes, which are not caused by DNA, but rather through “retroactive” processes. This epigenetic processes send chemical signals into the DNA and influence how they express. They can even influence the function of cells and organs. If this influence is of a positive nature, then our cells and organs will be better able to cope with challenges later in life, such as a diet high in fat.

Epigenetics are all processes in a cell which are considered as "additional" to the normal processes of genetics. These changes are triggered by environmental factors — in particular nutrition and habits.

How does epigenetics work?

Your baby's DNA is made up of a unique and lifelong unchangeable combination of genes. At conception, your baby is only one cell. During the pregnancy, the existing cells divide into new cells and those divide again — this process will repeat itself millions of times over the entire live. Every new created cell comprises the same DNA, meaning the same gene sequence. However, epigenetic processes change how this "blueprint" is read, causing some cells to behave differently than others.

The body's blueprint

Did you know that the body's blueprint consists of a gene sequence and the epigenetic processes ensure certain genes are activated while others are not? Diet plays a crucial role in this process.

These findings form the basis of Nutricia's research on early life nutrition. Research has found that nearly 80% of your child’s future health is in your hands. The parents' genes only make up around 20%.

Epigenetics and ENP

The first 1,000 days — from conception to early childhood — is a unique period in which epigenetic processes play an important role. During this sensitive phase, the fastest growth occurs and the epigenetic processes in your child's body are 5 times as reactive as in an adult.

Early life nutritional programming:

Nutricia’s research studys the influence that a mother and baby’s diet has on the child's health later in life.

This means that right now you have the opportunity to influence your baby's future health.

As early as during your pregnancy, you can begin supporting the development of key building blocks of your baby's body — particularly the brain, metabolism and the immune system — through the right nutrition

You can already begin laying the foundations for your baby's future health today. Take advantage of this opportunity and start to influence your child’s future health.

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