I saw this posting (below) on Slash.com, yesterday, and thought of it when I heard a news article on the radio this afternoon. I don't recall the name of the program making the report. More about the radio piece, after the Slash.com posting.
Radio news article
The radio news article explained that a male human's going through tough times (as in near-starvation conditions) during pre-puberty years affected the cardiovascular health of his son - and - even of his grandson. The radio news article was based on a study out of Sweden, published in 2002 by G Kaati, L O Bygren and S Edvinsson.
Here is a link to the report and below is their abstract.
Overfeeding and overeating in families are traditions that are often transferred from generation to generation. Irrespective of these family traditions, food availability might lead to overfeeding, in its turn leading to metabolic adaptations. Apart from selection, could these adaptations to the social environment have transgenerational effects? This study will attempt to answer the following question: Can overeating during a child's slow growth period (SGP), before their prepubertal peak in growth velocity influence descendants' risk of death from cardiovascular disease and diabetes? Data were collected by following three cohorts born in 1890, 1905 and 1920 in Överkalix parish in northern Sweden up until death or 1995. The parents' or grandparents' access to food during their SGP was determined by referring to historical data on harvests and food prices, records of local community meetings and general historical facts. If food was not readily available during the father's slow growth period, then cardiovascular disease mortality of the proband was low. Diabetes mortality increased if the paternal grandfather was exposed to a surfeit of food during his slow growth period. (Odds Ratio 4.1, 95% confidence interval 1.33-12.93, P=0.01). Selection bias seemed to be unlikely. A nutrition-linked mechanism through the male line seems to have influenced the risk for cardiovascular and diabetes mellitus mortality.
European Journal of Human Genetics (2002) 10, 682-688. doi:10.1038/sj.ejhg.5200859