Skip to main content Accessibility help
×
×
Home

The influence of early diet on later development

  • Ruth Morley (a1)
Summary

The possibility that early nutrition has long term consequences in man has been much debated. There have been limited opportunities to perform formal randomised studies on the effect of early nutrition in man and many studies have been flawed by problems with study design. Infants born preterm are a special group. At the start of this study in 1982 evidence on which to base choice of diet was inconsistent and related only to short term outcome, and diets available for such babies differed greatly in nutrient content. In this group it was both ethical and practical to conduct a formal, randomised trial of early diet and outcome and the results were clearly needed for management decisions.

A long term prospective outcome study was undertaken on 926 preterm infants randomly assigned to the diet received in the neonatal period. Surviving children have been followed at 9 months, 18 months and now 7½–8 years of age. The findings suggest that children fed a nutrient supplemented preterm formula perform better than those fed a standard formula milk, and also that human milk may contain factors which promote brain growth or development. Outcome data from the randomised trials show that a very brief period of dietary manipulation (on average for the first 4 weeks of life) influences later development.

Copyright
References
Hide All
Barker, D. J. P., Gluckman, P. D., Godfrey, K. M., Harding, J. E., Owens, J. A. & Robinson, J. S. (1993) Review. Fetal nutrition and cardiovascular disease in adult life. Lancet, 341, 938941.
Birch, D. G., Birch, E. E, Hoffman, D. R. & Uauy, R. D. (1992) Retinal development in very low birthweight infants fed diets differing in omega-3 fatty acids. Invest. Ophthalmol. Vis. Sci. 33, 23652376.
Britton, J. R. & Kastin, A. J. (1991) Biologically active polypeptides in milk. Am. J. med. Sci. 301, 370374.
Carlson, S. E., Werkman, S. H., Peeples, J. M. & Wilson, W. M. (1994) Long chain fatty acids and early visual and cognitive development of preterm infants. Eur. J. din. Nutr. 48, Suppl. 2 S2730.
Grantham-McGregor, S. (1987) Field Studies in Early Nutrition and Later Achievement, pp. 221233. Academic Press, London.
Innis, S. M. (1991) Essential fatty acids in growth and development. Prog. Lipid Res. 30, 39103.
Janowsky, J. S., Scott, D. T., Wheeler, R. E. & Auestad, N. (1995) Fatty acids affect early language development. Pediatr. Res. 37, 310A.
Lewis, D. S., Mott, G. E., McMahan, C. A., Mason, E. J., Carey, K. D. & McGill, H. C. (1988) Deferred effects of preweaning diet on atherosclerosis in adolescent baboons. Atherosclerosis, 8, 274280.
Lucas, A. (1991) Programming by early nutrition in man. In: The Childhood Environment and Adult Disease, pp. 3855. CIBA Foundation Symposium 156. Edited by Bock, G. R. & Whelan., J.Wiley, Chichester.
Lucas, A., Cole, T. J., Morley, R., Lucas, P. J., Davis, J. A., Bamford, M. F., Crowle, P., Dossetor, J. F. B., Pearse, R. & Boon, A. J. (1988) Factors associated with a mother's choice to provide breast milk for a preterm infant. Arch. Dis. Child. 63, 4852.
Lucas, A., Morley, R., Cole, T. J. & Gore, S. M. (1994) A randomised multicentre study of human milk versus formula and later development in preterm infants. Arch. Dis. Child. 70, F141–F146.
Lucas, A., Morley, R., Cole, T. J., Gore, S. M., Davis, J. A., Bamford, M. F. M. & Dossetor, J. F. B. (1989) Early diet in preterm babies and developmental status in infancy. Arch. Dis. Child. 11, 15701578.
Lucas, A., Morley, R., Cole, T. J., Gore, S. M., Lucas, P. J., Crowle, P., Pearse, R., Boon, A. J. & Powell, R. (1990) Early diet in preterm babies and developmental status at 18 months. Lancet, 335, 14771481.
Lucas, A., Morley, R., Cole, T. J., Lister, G. & Leeson Payne, C. (1991) Breast milk and subsequent intelligence quotient in children born preterm. Lancet, 339, 261264.
Makrides, M., Neumann, M. A., Simmer, K., Pater, J. & Gibson, R. (1995) Are long chain polyunsaturated fatty acids essential nutrients in infancy? Lancet, 345, 14631468.
Morley, R., Cole, T. J., Powell, R. & Lucas, A. (1988) Mother's choice to provide breast milk and developmental outcome. Arch. Dis. Child. 63, 13821385.
Smart, J. (1986) Undernutrition, learning and memory: review of experimental studies. In: Proceedings of XIII International Congress of Nutrition, pp. 7478. Edited by Taylor, T. G. & Jenkins., N. K.Libbey, London.
Recommend this journal

Email your librarian or administrator to recommend adding this journal to your organisation's collection.

Journal of Biosocial Science
  • ISSN: 0021-9320
  • EISSN: 1469-7599
  • URL: /core/journals/journal-of-biosocial-science
Please enter your name
Please enter a valid email address
Who would you like to send this to? *
×

Metrics

Full text views

Total number of HTML views: 0
Total number of PDF views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

Abstract views

Total abstract views: 0 *
Loading metrics...

* Views captured on Cambridge Core between <date>. This data will be updated every 24 hours.

Usage data cannot currently be displayed