Scientists have linked mothers’ choline intake to intelligence in their babies.
Pregnant women are known for having intense cravings during those nine months when they’re growing a human inside of them and those cravings aren’t always healthy choices. Giving in to too many ice cream or French fry cravings isn’t good for mama or her unborn baby, but according to new research, indulging in a desire for a big, fried breakfast could actually boost baby’s brain power.
Researchers from Cornell University found that bacon and eggs are full of a key nutrient for unborn babies: choline. This stuff is essential to developing the part of the brain linked to memory and recall and pork and eggs are excellent sources of choline.
In the small study of 26 women, half of them ate 480 milligrams of choline a day - which is 30 milligrams more than the daily recommendation - and the other group consumed almost twice as much choline - 930 milligrams. Then researchers tested the babies at four, seven, 10, and 13-months old to compare their processing, speed, motor response and visuospatial memory.
It turns out, the more choline the mamas ate, the higher their baby’s intelligence. So researchers concluded that the current recommendation for choline isn’t enough and pregnant women should be eating more of it. But an egg only has about 115 milligrams and two strips of bacon have about 60 milligrams of choline, so it’s not easy to get 930 milligrams without supplements. And for you vegetarians and vegans out there, don’t worry, there’s choline in nuts, broccoli, and legumes, too, so your babies will also be brilliant.