Brazilian Study Points to Breastfeeding Benefits

Breastfeeding is associated with improved IQ and could impact success later in life, according to a 3-decade study in Brazil.

Launched in 1982 in Pelotas, Brazil, the researchers recorded breastfeeding information in early childhood for about 3,500 participants and then followed up with them 30 years later.  Participants who were breastfed at least a year scored higher on IQ tests and earned higher monthly incomes than those who were breastfed for less than 1 month, according to The Lancet Global Health.

In NPR Goats and Soda’s coverage,   pediatrician Valerie Flaherman of the University of California, San Francisco cautions against reading too much into the findings. Flaherman notes, "I do worry that sometimes when mothers hear about projects like this, they feel guilty when they were not able to breast-feed their babies.”

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