A Brazilian study published in The Lancet Global Health involving approximately 3,500 babies has demonstrated a positive link between breastfeeding duration and intelligence. Led by Dr. Bernardo Lessa Horta, this study took into account numerous confounding factors which could have driven this association (e.g. mother’s education, family income, child’s birth weight). Participants of the study performed/received breastfeeding that lasted a few weeks to over one year. The babies who were breastfed longer not only scored higher on intelligence assessments but were also more likely to receive more schooling and higher wages as adults. Dr. Horta believes this association is seen because long-chain fatty acids, of which breast milk is a good source, are essential for brain development. How often do you get questions about breastfeeding from your patients? What obstacles may discourage a mother from breastfeeding?
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