Suggested answer to exercise: Effect of breast feeding on intelligence, 3

Question 3: The authors concluded that breast feeding has little or no effect on intelligence in children. Why do they say this?

Suggested answer

The maximum increase in mean IQ which we estimate that breastfeeding would lead to is 1.23 IQ points. This is tiny compared to the standard deviation, which is 15 IQ points.

Hence we can conclude that any effect which breastfeeding has on mean IQ must be very small.

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Last updated: 6 November, 2006.

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