Stephanie Watson at WebMD has written a nice article for a general audience that addresses some of the basic issues related to maternal health and the long-term health of children – “Blame Your Health on Mom? Not so fast“. In short, an individual’s risk for disease can be programmed very early in life. This is currently some of the most important work in medical research. We need to greatly improve our understanding of which aspects health and disease risk are programmed early on and how. Importantly, we also need to find ways to apply what we are learning about early life programming.