Breastfeeding leads to smarter kids

Posted at 01/20/11 11:02 AM

MANILA, Philippines - Did you know that breastfeeding your children may help them grow up not just healthier, but smarter too?

According to a study done by the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research in Perth, Australia, children breastfed for more than 6 months garnered higher grades in math, reading and spelling.

Breast milk has fatty acids that help in the growth of a child's brain.

The study conducted by the Institute involved more than 1,000 children who were breastfed for at least 6 months.

Results showed that the breastfed children scored 10% higher in math, and 7% higher in spelling tests compared to children who were not breastfed for at least 6 months.

"Kung hindi sapat ang nutrisyon na ibinibigay sa isang bata, hindi mabilis at hindi optimum ang development ng brain," said Custer Deocaris, a science expert on the development of human brain and molecular biology.

JD Agapito has breastfed all four of her children, and she said all of them love studying.

The eldest, DX, is good in math. The second child, Xy, is good in science.

Even her youngest child, Chai Square, is a fast learner too.

Agapito believes breastfeeding her kids helped them learn concepts fast. And not only that, breastfeeding doesn't cost at all.

"Talagang walang kapalit ang breast milk. At kung iisipin, parang napakarami talaga ng kabutihan," Agapito said.

Aware of the benefits of breastfeeding, Dr. Elvira Henares-Esguerra has formed Children for Breastfeeding to help promote breastfeeding among parents.

"The breastfeeding culture is getting extinct. And we thought that it would be best to begin with children," said Henares-Esguerra.