The One Food Pregnant Women Should Eat More Of To Boost Cognitive Development

My best friend is having a baby and I can't stop sending her articles about how to grow the healthiest, cutest, smartest, most talented fetus. I don't think she reads most of them, but she definitely gave this article about how fruit boosts babies' cognitive development in the womb a look, because a) fruit is the best and b) who doesn't want their baby to be born a genius? They're definitely two buzz words that are worth clicking on — unlike the usual mumbo jumbo claiming that if you hop on your right foot 50 times a day or sing upside down your child will come out a tap dancing prodigy with no allergies.

I think the reason why it's easy for her, and other expecting moms, to brush off these types of pregnancy fad articles is because generally, they don't pan out to be true. They're much closer to theories than they are factual trials with impressive results. Keyword: impressive. But the difference here is that eating fruit is not a fad. Our earliest civilizations could see the health benefits of a high fruit diet. And now we have the studies to show that in healthy adults, increased fruit intake can strengthen the immune system and stave off heart disease and stroke. Fruit is, without a doubt, good for you in moderation.

The research behind prenatal fruit consumption does not state that by eating fruit, intelligence will magically form in the child's mind — rather, the increased consumption of fruit can have effects on the development of the child, comparable to an extra week in the womb. Meaning, that by eating six to seven servings of fruit a day, mothers were able to advance the development of their child within the natural time frame of pregnancy.

The tests were done with nearly 700 mothers and children and the research was gathered after the children had their one year cognitive test. The results found that on average, the children who were born to mothers that ate six to seven servings of fruit while they were pregnant, scored between six and seven points higher on the standard IQ test — which is said to be a substantial and impressive increase, worthy of noting.

But, as with any health benefit, there's always a risk. Expectant mothers should talk to their doctor before embarking on a high fruit diet. Too much fruit can lead to gestational diabetes, high birth weight and other issues, because even though fruit is all natural, it's mostly sugar. And too much sugar can always be a health risk. So if you have high hopes that your child will become an early member of MENSA, talk to your doctor about how to become a fruit ninja, healthfully.

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