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Home Wellness Research Breastfeeding Duration of Breastfeeding Affects IQ

Duration of Breastfeeding Affects IQ

Wednesday, 29 October 2008 10:20

Doctors of chiropractic have traditionally been strong proponents of breastfeeding. Now, just-published research shows that doctors should not only encourage mothers to breastfeed, but should also instruct them to stay at it for at least six months.   According to an article in the Archives of Disease in Childhood, babies who are breast-fed for at least six months grow to be more intelligent than their peers who are breast-fed for less time.

The analysis tracked 345 Scandinavian youngsters. The 17% of subjects who were breast-fed for less than three months were more likely to score below average for mental skills at 13 months and total intelligence at 5 years, compared with subjects who were breast-fed for at least six months. This correlation remained after investigators controlled for various risk factors of cognitive impairment, such as maternal age, socioeconomic status, education and history of smoking. Duration of breastfeeding did not appear to influence motor skills.

Angelsen NK, Vik T, Jacobsen G, Bakketeig LS.   Breast feeding and cognitive development at age 1 and 5 years   Arch Dis Child 2001 (Sep);   85 (3):   183-188