In Brain Maker, I dedicated a lot of space to exploring how we initially form our microbiome, the collection of more than 100 trillion organisms that live within our intestines. Certainly early life experiences are critical in the creation of what is now a looked upon as representing a new “organ” within the human body. As you will recall, I talked about how important it is for children to be born through the vaginal birth canal, if that is not medically precluded, and, also, I emphasized how fundamentally critical it is that children breastfeed, from the perspective of creating the best, most health-preserving, microbiome possible.
In a new report from researchers in Sweden, Dynamics and Stabilization of the Human Gut Microbiome During the First Year of Life, researchers evaluated gut microbiomes of 98 mothers and their infants during the first year of life. Continue reading
Since the release of Grain Brain I’ve gotten a lot of questions and comments from mothers, including expectant mothers, about the wonderful health benefits of our dietary recommendations as they relate not only to fetal brain development, but also for brain development during infancy. In this video I address these issues and focus especially on the critical role of the omega-3 DHA in brain development. Watch the video, and keep in mind DHA’s important role for brain health for people of all ages.
It is estimated that in America today more than 6 million of our school-aged children have been given a diagnosis of attention deficit disorder. What’s even more disturbing is the revelation that close to 70% of these children are taking potentially dangerous, mind-altering medications to help them pay attention.
As it turns out, research shows that if mothers take even a low dosage of the omega-3 fatty acid DHA during the first few months of breastfeeding, there is a significant increase in the ability of their children to pay attention when they are examined as they enter school. Research shows that when children receive breast milk from mothers who were taking a single, 200mg capsule of DHA, attention scores were much better when compared to the children of non-supplemented mothers when attention tests were administered at age 5 years. Other studies have clearly confirmed that the level of DHA in breast milk increases as much as 2-fold following mother’s supplementation.
These findings lend further support for the understanding that supplementation of DHA is important not just during pregnancy, but while nursing as well.