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Thread: Nutrition, Pregnancy, and IQ

  1. #1

    Post Nutrition, Pregnancy, and IQ

    “No general consensus exists on what the environmental factors are that determine intelligence... We believe there is strong evidence that one of the major biological factors affecting intelligence is the nutritional quality of the diets of pregnant women, and the nutrition obtained by the fetus, and by babies, young children and adolescents; this affects the growth of the brain, which in turn, affects intelligence... the secular [i.e. long-term] rises in intelligence that occurred in Western populations during the twentieth century are largely attributable to improvements in nutrition... There were substantial improvements in the quality of nutrition of the populations of the western nations during the twentieth century that were responsible for increases in average height of about one standard deviation. The increases in intelligence have been of about the same order... There is little doubt that the extensive poor quality of nutrition in economically underdeveloped countries has an adverse effect on the intelligence of the populations... There is a growing consensus among experts in this field that poor nutrition is a significant factor responsible for low intelligence in poor countries.”

    -IQ and the Wealth of Nations

  2. #2

    Post Re: Nutrition, Pregnancy, and IQ

    Vitamin Shortages Blamed for 15 Percent Drop in IQs Worldwide
    Updated: Monday, Mar. 22, 2004 - 4:40 PM EST.

    New York (dpa) - An estimated one-third of the world's people suffer from vitamin and mineral deficiencies, leading to a reduction in national IQs of up to 15 percentage points through iodine shortages in particular, a report released Tuesday said.

    The report, released by the Canada-based Micronutrient Initiative and UNICEF, suggested that increased food fortification to flour and other staple products, similar to the global push to add iodine to salt, could help solve the problem.

    Although a world-wide campaign to increase iodine supplies through salt additives has reduced iodine shortfalls from 30 per cent to 15 per cent, much remains to be done with iodine and other vitamins and minerals, the report said.

    Researchers took a "vitamin census" of 80 developing countries and found that about 2 billion people fell short in their mental and physical development because of the shortages.

    Those numbers included a total of 18 million children born mentally impaired due to iodine deficiencies. Worst hit countries in terms of pure numbers were India with 6.6 million, Pakistan with 2.1 million children, and Ethiopia and Bangladesh each with more than 600,000 children.

    Iodine deficiency was "estimated to have lowered the intellectual capacity of almost all of the nations reviewed by as much as 10 to 15 percentage points", the report said.

    Deficiency in another mineral, iron, in the 6-to-24 month age group impaired the mental development of approximately 40 to 60 per cent of children in developing countries, the report said. Countries worst hit by more than 80 per cent iron deficiencies in children under five years old included Malawi, Mozambique, Sierra Leone, Benin, Bhutan, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Ethiopia and Guinea-Bissau.

    The report blamed losses in gross domestic product of up to 2.7 per cent in Mali, and more than 2 per cent in Burundi, Burkina Faso, Angola and Afghanistan on the nutrient shortfalls of iron, iodine and Vitamin A.

    The report, entitled "Vitamin and Mineral Deficiency (VMD), a Global Progress Report," also associated the death of 1 million young children each year on Vitamin A deficiency.

  3. #3

    Post Re: Nutrition, Pregnancy, and IQ

    Mar 28, 04:11 PM
    Milwaukee Journal Sentinel

    Vitamin shortage hurts IQs, study says

    United Nations survey says deficiencies affect developing countries

    Associated Press

    Sunday, March 28, 2004

    United Nations -- The brainpower of entire nations has diminished because of a shortage of the right vitamins, and slipping nutrients into people's food seems to be the only solution, a new U.N. survey says.

    To fight the problem, the United Nations is prescribing a whole pantry of artificially fortified foods: soy sauce laced with zinc, "super salt" spiked with iron, cooking oil fortified with vitamin A.

    Deficiencies in these vitamins are having alarming effects in developing countries, even ones where people generally have enough to eat, said the study.

    A lack of iron lowers children's IQs by an average of five to seven points, the report says. A deficiency in iodine cuts it 13 more points, said Venkatesh Mannar, president of the Micronutrient Initiative, which, along with the United Nations Children's Fund, produced the report. Birth defects increase when mothers don't get enough folic acid, and a shortage of vitamin A makes children 25% to 30% more likely to die of disease.

    "So ubiquitous is vitamin and mineral deficiency that it debilitates in some significant degree the energies, intellects, and economic prospects of nations," the study says.

    It looked at 80 developing countries representing some 80% of the world's population.

    In most Western countries, governments have fought the problem with additives: Iodine is sprayed onto salt before packaging; vitamin A is added to milk and margarine; flour is enriched with niacin, iron and folic acid.

    But that doesn't work in countries where governments are weak, food is not processed in big mills and diets are based on a single starchy staple such as rice or corn.

    Other health experts said the U.N. findings echoed other studies showing the link between intelligence and nutrition. "This is absolutely happening," said Ronald Waldman, a professor of clinical health at Columbia University. "Vitamin deficiency is a disease, and when people have this disease, they don't reach their ideal mental potential."

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    True, nutrients during pregnancy are very important and partly responsible of the good development of the foetus (organs, neuronal connexions, brain structure etc).

    All nutrients are important for neuronal cell growth and development, but some appear to have greater effects during the late fetal and neonatal time periods. These include protein, iron, zinc, selenium, iodine, folate (vit B9), vitamin A, choline, and long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids

    Lack of some nutrients leads the baby to take what he needs for his development in his mothers resources (for example calcium would be taken from the bones, teeth etc) because his health prevails. The mother would soon get health problems for herself if she can't bring the foetus these nutriments.

    We also know the counter effect when it comes to unhealthy food and toxins the mother could eat and drink that will affect the foetus's health as well in wrong way. Studies have shown that when a pregnant woman is smoking the foetus shows a slow fetal developpment for example.

    BTW, breastfeeding has been proved to be related to result in a higher IQ and a better brain structure for babies who have been breastfed at least 3 months after birth, compared to babies who have been giving another milk.

    About children, they need all the nutrients to grow up as healthy as possible. Height and intelligence are associated with different corelated factors though which seem to be a good quality sleep during childhood and teenage time + good nutrition + quality environnement (care, love, positive emotions).

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    Birth defects

    "Those numbers included a total of 18 million children born mentally impaired due to iodine deficiencies. Worst hit countries in terms of pure numbers were India with 6.6 million, Pakistan with 2.1 million children, and Ethiopia and Bangladesh each with more than 600,000 children."
    It seems US invites in many special cases with these birth defects and mental disadvantages. Papers keep posting Zika babies like we're so proud to care for them for life that may cost up to 10 million dollars per child. I understand all cultures have their challenges and have to handle the young with health problems. There are multiple cases where parents had three severely autistic children in which you can see the direct mental deterioration and yet, they strive to have a "normal" child. This is not solely nutrition problems but is also genetic. The politically correct science community avoids discussing "inbreeding" effects from these rural Third World holes. I live in an immigrant hub so I've seen too many bizarre "tribal" ethnics in the area who I openly notice from their "exotic" appearances. It is partly "why" we've had such an increase in autism and other spectrum disorders especially from the countries listed above. They're refugees and lotto immigrants.

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