A recent study showed that women over 50 who had breastfed performed better on cognitive tests than the group who had not breastfed.
As every year, the “World Week for Breastfeeding” (SAM) was celebrated from 1 to 7 October. SAM brings together the efforts of all the promoters of this extraordinary opportunity for babies and mothers, governments and organizations to raise public awareness and generate support for the cause.
The SAM theme, different in each edition, is launched by WABA, World Alliance for Breasfeeding Action, a vast network inspired by the Innocenti Declaration and the Global Strategy for Nutrition of the Infants and Children of WHO and UNICEF (epicentro.iss.it).
The title of the 2021 edition is: “Protecting breastfeeding, a responsibility to be shared”, to underline the importance of the broader cooperation to encourage this option as well healthy for the little ones and their mothers.
Breastfeeding is a defense against cognitive decline
In this scenario, he saw it take action numerous initiatives also in our country, we have recorded the publication of an interesting scientific article which recently appeared in the journal “Evolution, Medicine and Public Health”.
In this UCLA (University of California Los Angeles) study, American researchers analyzed data collected from women included in two clinical surveys, which involved the administration of psychological tests to measure learning skills e the speed of mental processing (quotidiano.net).
Better outcomes for women who had breastfed
65% of non-depressed women had breastfed versus 44% of those with depression but, regardless of whether or not this condition was present, those who had breastfed showed statistically better results compared to those who did not. It was also found that the longer breastfeeding lasted, the better the cognitive performance (Ansa.it).
Breastfeeding is (also) a “neuroprotective” gesture
One of the researchers, Dr. Molly Fox, explains how the idea of the studio was born:
Many studies have found that breastfeeding improves the long-term health and well-being of the baby (…) our research is one of the few to have examined its effects on long-term health in women. The findings, which show better cognitive performance among breastfeeding women over 50, suggest that this gesture may be “neuroprotective” later in life.
Superior cognitive performance
Because breastfeeding was found to also help regulate stress, promote infant bonding, and reduce the risk of postpartum depression (which suggests acute neuro-cognitive benefits for the mother), we suspected it could also be associated with to long-term superior cognitive performance for the mother.
This is the first survey to focus on the impact of breastfeeding on women’s long-term cognitive health. If the discovery of this correlation has further confirmation, this will lead to important reflections in the study and in the prevention of serious neuro-degenerative diseases such as Alzheimer’s disease, the main cause of dementia and disability among the elderly, affecting women more frequently.