A recent study led by Professor Adrian Raine of the University of Pennsylvania strongly supports the idea that a steady fish consumption should become a regular part of a child’s diet. Other sources of omega-3 fatty acids should be added as well.
What is the Relation Between a Regular Fish Consumption and a Higher IQ?
Dr. Raine polled over 500 Chinese families with children between the ages of 9 and 11. This questionnaire sought information pertaining to how often the children ate fish, which is the most common source of omega-3 fatty acids. The parents were also asked questions concerning the children’s sleep patterns.
After analyzing this information, Dr. Raine and his fellow researchers gave the children an in-depth IQ test. This measured math, communication, information processing, and other academic skills.
The study results showed a definite correlation between a higher fish consumption and a better academic performance. At the same time, the team also noted a similar link between the diet and sleep.
Eating fish is believed to stimulate the body’s production of hormones associated with sleep regulation. Children who ate fish once a week or more were found to have nearly a 5 point advantage on the IQ tests administered by the research team. These results were obtained over their non-fish consuming classmates.
Furthermore, researchers found that even children who only ate fish two to three times a month showed a significant advantage over their classmates who had no fish in their diets at all.
Children who ate fish more infrequently but maintained it as a part of their regular diet tended to score at least 3 points higher than their non-fish eating counterparts.
Despite the health and academic benefits of a diet rich in seafood, many children claim to dislike the taste of fish. Researchers suggest introducing the flavor early on in a child’s development so as to create a natural affinity for this food later in life.
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