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Why Astrology Isn't Real Science
Does Birth Month Affect Your Personality?
Astrology is a pseudoscience based on the idea that there's a relationship to the position of the astrological bodies and events of Earth. Horoscopes prescribe that the alignment of the planets dictates how we behave and shapes our personalities. We all may take a peek at our horoscope every once in a while, they are pretty unanimously dismissed by the scientific community. However, there have been a number of studies that seem to show that the month you are born might have some impact on your health later in life. A 2012 study published in the Journal of Neurology, Neurosurgery, and Psychiatry found the risk of developing multiple sclerosis is highest for those born in the month of April, and lowest in October. A different study published in the journal Thorax found that babies born in high pollen seasons were more likely to later develop allergies or asthma when they get older.
These studies prompted an even bigger study published in the Journal of American Medical Informatics Association, which used Columbia University Medical Center's health record data to compared nearly 1,700 diseases against the birth dates and medical histories of 1.7 million patients. This massive study was able to find 55 health problems related to what month you were born in. There's even a suggestion of seasonality, with conditions grouping in certain months that are close together, like a risk of heart conditions rising for people born in March or April.
So what the heck is going on here? Have astrologers been right all this time? Not quite. As we're fond of saying on DNews: correlation does not equal causation. Scientists are able to find to find a scientific explanation behind many of these. Associations might be because of certain environmental conditions of these months. For example: the amount of sunlight a person is exposed to early in life could change the developing brain. And those kids born in, say, November or December might be more likely to get ADHD. On other hand it might be those kids are just younger in their class so the workload causes them to struggle more than their older peers. The researchers stressed that the risks they found are only minor: diet and exercise are "more influential" variables on a person's health, for example.
Birth Month Affects Lifetime Disease Risk: A Phenome-Wide Method (Jamia.org)
"Babies Born In Pollen And Mold Seasons Have Greater Odds Of Developing Asthma Symptoms"
Babies Born In Pollen And Mold Seasons Have Greater Odds Of Developing Asthma Symptoms (Science Daily)
"A new study suggests that newborns whose first few months of life coincide with high pollen and mold seasons are at increased risk of developing early symptoms of asthma."
Month of birth effect: Give pregnant women vitamin D supplements to ward off multiple sclerosis, say researchers (Science Daily)
"The risk of developing multiple sclerosis is highest in the month of April, and lowest in October, indicates an analysis of the available evidence, published online in the Journal of Neurology Neurosurgery and Psychiatry."