Not Breastfeeding May Hurt Your Child's IQ

Not Breastfeeding May Hurt Your Child's IQ

According to the results of a study conducted on 1312 children and mothers, breastfeeding for 1 year increases the baby's language ability and brain development. Here are the details of the research: 

Breastfeeding Improves Language Development 

Researchers from Boston Children's Hospital and Harvard Medical School followed 1,312 children and mothers for 7 years. This research shows that regular breastfeeding during the first year of life improves children's cognitive abilities more than breastfeeding only for the first 6 months. Again, according to the study, the language development of children who are breastfed for the first 12 months is at better levels when they are 3 years old, and verbal IQ is higher at 7 years old. The clear information revealed by the research is as follows: Breastfeeding the baby for the first year contributes to an increase of about 4 points in the child's general IQ. 

Breast Milk Nourishes the Brain 

According to the same study, the nutrients found in breast milk are very beneficial for the brain. Especially during the first year, regular breastfeeding increases the DHA in breast milk. DHA, or docosahexaenoic acid, is a subgroup of omega 3 fatty acids that are extremely beneficial for health. According to experts, DHA is one of the important building blocks for the brain, retina and skin. The richest source of DHA is found in algae oil, breast milk and fish oil. Since such an important component is not produced naturally in the human body, it needs to be supplemented with food and of course with breast milk from the first 1 year of life. For this reason, breastfeeding mothers should have a diet rich in oily fish, shellfish, flaxseed and walnuts. Numerous studies report that breastfeeding is associated with higher scores on tests of neurodevelopment and cognition later in life, suggesting that breast milk potentially supports early brain development. 

What Else Affects Cognitive Development

Whether it's breast milk or formula, it's important to get the proper nutrients for brain development. However, there are several factors that contribute to cognitive health. These: 

Cognitive development that benefits the baby begins in the womb. When the mother spends this process by being careful to stay away from stress as much as possible and to eat healthy, the process is beneficial for the baby. The close relationship between the child and his parents in the postnatal period also makes a significant difference in the cognitive development of the child. 

What is the Effect of Breastfeeding on Premature Babies? 

Breast milk is also beneficial for premature babies. Breast milk has a supportive effect on the development of the central nervous system and brain in premature babies. All these studies show that breastfeeding is healthy and beneficial. 

Other Benefits of Breastfeeding for Mother and Baby 

  • The baby receives antibodies from the mother through breastfeeding. Antibodies help develop a strong immune system and protect babies from serious infections. 
  • It helps the mother reduce her risk of developing breast and ovarian cancer, type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. 
  • Breastfeeding promotes positive mood and reduces the risk of postpartum depression. 
  • Breastfeeding increases levels of emotionally soothing hormones, including prolactin and oxytocin. 
  • It reduces the risk of postpartum bleeding and urinary tract infection. 

In the article we have compiled for you, we have explained the effect of breastfeeding on the development of intelligence in babies, but do not worry for various reasons or preferably if you do not breastfeed your baby and use baby formula. Not breastfeeding alone does not have a negative impact on your child's long-term mental development and problem-solving ability. 

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