New insights into ending chronic disease.

David J. Barker


June 29th 1938 – August 27, 2013

Innovator, physician, scientist, humanitarian — author of THE BARKER THEORY and moving spirit in the founding of a new branch of medicine, THE DEVELOPMENTAL ORIGINS OF HEALTH AND DISEASE.


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In the past, the common diseases of adult life were thought to be caused by people’s lifestyles — their food, smoking habits, stress and lack of physical activity. While bad life styles do increase the risk of coronary heart disease, diabetes and cancer, differences in people’s lifestyles do not explain why one person gets a disease while another does not.

The burden of chronic disease is rising. Everyone has family and friends who are affected. The costs for health care are becoming insupportable. Soon 250 million people around the globe will have diabetes. Genes cannot explain such an epidemic.

We need a new strategy to combat this threat. One has been discovered. We now know that if a baby is poorly nourished in the womb, so that it grows slowly, its organs, including its heart, kidney and bone, will be permanently changed and made vulnerable to coronary heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes and osteoporosis.

A baby is nourished by its mother’s body as well as by what she eats in pregnancy. Her body is built up through her life. Girls and young women need to be well nourished so that their babies will be well nourished.

The mission of the Foundation is to improve the growth and development of babies and young children by ensuring that girls and young women have varied and balanced diets. To achieve this mission, the Foundation will promote public engagement, training and research.
Nutrition In The Womb

Copies of David Barker’s book “Nutrition in the Womb” can be ordered from:

Now Available

Nutrition In The Womb By David Barker M.D

How better nutrition during development will prevent heart disease, diabetes and stroke.

New research has shown that malnutrition in the womb permanently changes the structure and function of the body. It leads to heart disease, diabetes and stroke in later life.

“Dr. David Barker’s ground breaking research has irrevocably influenced the way in which the medical and nutrition community now views optimal development.”

— Eileen KennedyDean, Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University

“Barker’s book gives us the unique opportunity to reexamine the role of nutrition throughout life, and place the emphasis where it really makes a difference, in early life. Good nutrition begins in the womb. It is time for this novel insight to make it into policy and practice.”

— Ricardo UauyPresident of the International Union of Nutritional Sciences

“History will show that David Barker’s discoveries changed the face of medicine.”

— Kent ThornburgDirector, Heart Research Center, Oregon Health and Science University

“We have been delighted to support this pivotal research.”

— Professor Sir Charles Georgeformer Medical Director, British Heart Foundation