Puberty, fertility and nutrition

young women

A team of researchers at the University of Texas Southwest Medical Center have linked the onset of puberty. Late puberty is associated with malnutrition while early puberty is linked to childhood obesity.

This runs counter to current theories about the molecular pathway which enables nutrition status to affect the onset of puberty. The team defined a new pathway for the process and validation of this theory in humans could lead to new approaches for treating puberty disorders and fertility.

The hormone leptin is key in letting the body know that nutrition levels are optimal for reproductive organs to function and puberty to start. Researchers had believed that leptin basically instructed the hypothalamus to start producing kisspeptins, small proteins that kick start puberty. But the research from Carol Elias at Southwestern did not prove this theory.

Furthermore they discovered another pathway which leptin uses in a different area of the brain vital for the onset of puberty. This new information provides important new insight into the regulation of puberty onset which could be the basis for new treatments for infertility.

Source: Medical News Today


The information provided on is designed to support, not replace, the relationship that exists between a patient/site visitor and his/her health professional. This information is solely for informational and educational purposes. The publication of this information does not constitute the practice of medicine, and this information does not replace the advice of your physician or other health care provider. Neither the owners or employees of nor the author(s) of site content take responsibility for any possible consequences from any treatment, procedure, exercise, dietary modification, action or application of medication which results from reading this site. Always speak with your primary health care provider before engaging in any form of self treatment. See our Legal Statement for more details.

Fertility Clinics Directory

Find a Fertility Clinic

If you or a loved one is suffering from infertility and needs help conceiving then we are here to offer help in any way we can. We have over 450 Fertility Clinics listed on our Directory. Click here to search for a Fertility Clinic that is right for you.