Recently I come across two papers on pregnancy and subsequent offspring's health status. One is from Douglas Almond on the long term impact of in utero 1918 influenza pandemic in the US (JPE, 2006, vol. 114. no. 4); the other is from Reyn Van Ewijk (LSE's CEP working paper, 2009) on the long term health impact on the next generation whose mothers were fasting during pregnancy.
It seems that our common sense is vindicated. Van Ewijk writes:
Using Indonesian cross-sectional data, I show that people who were exposed to Ramadan fasting during their mother’s pregnancy have a poorer general health and are sick more often than people who were not exposed. This effect is especially pronounced among older people, who, when exposed, also report health problems more often that are indicative of coronary heart problems and type 2 diabetes. The exposed are a bit smaller in body size and weigh less.We are aware that religious interpretation is a very personal affair, yet we still keep wondering what is the