THE LONGER YOU breastfeed the smarter your child will be.
That’s according to a study published by JAMA Pediatrics, which showed that nursing for longer is associated with three-year-olds having better language skills and seven-year-olds being verbally and non-verbally more intelligent.
It has been known for years that breastfeeding benefits child cognitive development, but few studies have looked into breastfeeding duration or the role of maternal diet during lactation.
Assessment test results showed that after adjustments for socio-demographics, maternal intelligence, and home environments, “longer breastfeeding duration was associated with higher Peabody Picture Vocabulary Test score at age three years and with higher intelligence on the Kaufman Brief Intelligence Test at age seven years”.
Researchers also studied the extent to which fish intake during lactation affected infant feeding and later cognition and results showed:
Beneficial effects of breastfeeding on the Wide Range Assessment of Visual Motor Abilities at age three years seemed greater for women who consumed two or more servings of fish per week compared with less than two servings of fish per week.
The study comes just a month after a new EU law was put in place that bans baby pictures on infant packaging in a bid to encourage breastfeeding.