Mothers Listen Up! Breastfeeding Longer May Improve Child’s Intelligence!

A recent study published in the journal JAMA is showing that children will be more intelligent later in life when breastfed for a longer period of time. Breast milk contains docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), which has shown to improve cognitive development in infants. Researchers also state that a diet in which fish is included is a good source of DHA.

The researchers used 1,312 mothers and babies to examine the relationship between the amount of time that a mother breastfeeds and the infants cognition at ages 3 and 7. Some babies were breastfed milk only, got mixed feeds, were weaned, or were never breastfed at all. The amount of fish that mothers ingested during lactation was also recorded in order to analyze if there would be any resulted effects.

The results of the study showed that the babies who were breastfed for longer periods of time scored higher on the Peabody Picture Vocabulary test when they were 3. Those children also scored higher on the Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test at age 7. Mothers who had a higher intake of fish during lactation had children who scored higher in the Wide Range Assessment of Visual Motor Abilities at the age of 3. So remember to breastfeed your child for as long as you can and maybe you will raise the next Einstein!