By Lucy Warhurst
Scientists at the Malaghan Institute in Wellington say the way we are born could impact our long-term health.
There are concerns babies born by caesarean section may not be exposed to essential bacteria to develop a healthy immune system.
The immune system gets a natural kickstart in the birth canal, where the baby is exposed to trillions of essential bacteria.
It essentially provides a bacterial code - a map of our future health. The concern is that babies born by C-section may be missing out.
One in three babies are born by C-section in Wellington and Auckland, and studies show they are at higher risk of developing diseases like asthma and obesity.
But there may be a solution – scientists say swabbing caesarean-born babies with birth canal bacteria may help build better immunity.
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