Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Breast is best for getting ahead (?)
Naive rubbish. High IQ mothers are most likely to breastfeed and it is the high IQ that they pass on which advantages their children
People breastfed as infants have a 24 percent better chance than their formula-fed counterparts of climbing the social ladder, said a study Tuesday.
Conversely, being fed mothers' milk as a baby also reduced one's chances of social demotion later in life by as much as 20 percent, said the findings published in the journal Archives of Disease in Childhood.
"Our study adds to evidence on the health benefits of breast feeding by showing that there may be lifelong social benefits," wrote the British research team.
The researchers looked at data on 17,419 people born in Britain in 1958 and another 16,771 born in 1970 -- comparing their social class at the age of 10 or 11 to that aged 33/34, and whether or not they had been breastfed.
Social class was categorised on a four-point scale ranging from unskilled or semi-skilled to professional or managerial.
In the 1958 group, 68 percent had been breastfed compared with only 36 percent in the 1970 group, said the study, which claims to be the largest yet to probe the relationship between breastfeeding and social mobility.
The researchers gathered data during regular followups every few years and took into account a range of other potential factors such as brain development and emotional stress levels.
"Intellect and stress accounted for around a third (36%) of the total impact of breastfeeding: breastfeeding enhances brain development, which boosts intellect, which in turn increases upwards social mobility. Breastfed children also showed fewer signs of stress," said a statement.
The authors said breast milk contained so-called long-chain polyunsaturated fatty acids or LCPUFA's, which were essential for brain development.
Previous studies, however, have suggested that LCPUFA's alone may not improve cognitive growth The team said it was impossible to tell which was more beneficial to the child: the nutrients found in breast milk, the skin-go-skin contact and bonding between a nursing mother and her infant, or perhaps a combination of the two.
Further research was needed, they said, to determine whether mothers who fed their infants formula could aid their long-term development by mimicking the skin contact between breastfeeding women and their offspring.
The 'peanut patch' that could save lives: New plaster reduces severity of allergic reactions in children
Just another version of systematic desensitization
A newly developed skin patch could help children who have a deadly peanut allergy. New figures show youngsters who once faced the threat of a fatal reaction from the tiniest amounts of peanut protein can snack on the nuts after wearing the patch for a year.
The stick-on patch, which could help thousands of children in the UK, is packed with tiny traces of peanut protein. Worn on the arm or back, it allows minute amounts of the protein to gradually seep through the top layers of the skin.
It then comes into contact with immune system cells which would normally trigger a life-threatening overreaction.
But the proteins are in such tiny quantities that the immune cells slowly get used to their presence, learning to recognise peanuts so that they are no longer a threat.
As a result, the body’s defences stop overreacting when they come into contact with peanuts.
The patch, about the size of ten pence piece, is undergoing trials involving more than 200 patients with severe peanut allergies.
The first results from one of the trials, involving children aged five to 17, show that many are able to build up tolerance to peanuts after wearing one for 12 to 18 months.
The volunteers wear a peanut patch or an identical dummy one, changing it for a new one every day.
After 12 months, at least 20 per cent of the children were consuming more than ten times the amount of peanut protein they were able to tolerate at the start of the study. By 18 months, the number had risen to 40 per cent.
This equated to about 1.5 peanuts in children who, before the treatment, were at risk of life-threatening anaphylactic shock from the smallest amount of peanut dust – prior to the study some were at risk of death if they were in the same room as someone who was eating peanuts.
The breakthrough patch, called Viaskin Peanut, does not cause anaphylactic shock because the proteins stay in the skin and do not penetrate as far as the bloodstream.
Researcher Professor Christophe Dupont, from the Necker Hospital in Paris, said: ‘The change in peanut consumption represents an important improvement in the quality of life of these patients.’
Posted by jonjayray at 12:08 AM