The man on the radio today said that there is not a single country in the world which has reversed their obesity epidemic yet. He claimed to be some kind of medical expert and referred to the phenomena of “foetal imprinting” also known as “Genomic imprinting” which has been discovered in the last five years. This is a process whereby the genes of a foetus are switched on or off according to input from the mother’s body. The assertion was that an overweight mother had a propensity to switching on genes in the foetus which would lead the child susceptible to obesity.
The evolutionary context was that an animal which found food abundant would pass on traits to her offspring which assumed that food was abundant. An animal which found food to be scarce would pass on traits to her offspring which assumed that food was scarce.
The upshot being that because many of us are fat our children are more likely to be fat.
I find this interesting. I had a conversation years ago where I claimed that evolution had stopped because modern society allows everyone to live and breed no matter what their natural capabilities. Evolution depends on the least well adapted dying out. If none of us die out due to our physical or mental traits then evolution has stopped. QED.
However, if foetal imprinting is a true phenomena then evolution will continue but it seems that far from the clichéd version of the future where our bodies shrivel and our head become massive we are destined to become a race of fatties. He ho. If that is destiny then I shall have another pork pie.