Research led by the University of Birmingham and Birmingham Women's and Children's NHS Foundation Trust has revealed new insight into the biological mechanisms of the long-term positive health effects of breastfeeding in preventing disorders of the immune system in later life. Breastfeeding is known to be associated with better health outcomes in infancy and throughout adulthood, and previous research has shown that babies receiving breastmilk are less likely to develop asthma, obesity, and autoimmune diseases later in life compared to those who are exclusively formula fed.
Several observational studies have established mixed evidence that maternal intake of both fish and omega-3 fatty acids (EPA and DHA) during gestation is beneficial to a child's psychomotor development in the years to come. A recent large-scale review, published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, furthered this claim after reporting significant differences between children whose mothers consumed high amounts of fish and omega-3s, versus those who were on the lower end of the spectrum.
Billions of neurons and connections in the developing brain drive how we think, feel, and act, enabling us to function and learn. These connections not only have to be fast but also efficient. An efficient brain uses its energy effectively to complete complex tasks via the relevant pathways, enabling the fastest flow of information throughout the entire brain. Fast and efficient brains learn better.1,2