Consultant psychiatrist Dr Robin McCreadie, of the Crichton Royal Hospital, Dumfries, who led the research as part of an investigation into the causes of schizophrenia, said: "Mothers' milk contains an essential constituent, missing from cows' milk, for proper brain development of babies. Breast- fed babies are nearly ten IQ points brighter than those raised on cows' milk.
"The fatty acid [docosahexaenoic acid, known as DHA] in mothers' milk is vital for proper development of the brain and to give it protection from schizophrenia. When all mothers breast-fed their babies, schizophrenia was virtually unknown in Britain. But with the advent of bottle feeding - early last century - the disease gained a foothold."
His survey, published in the British Journal of Psychiatry, shows that seven out of ten schizophrenia patients were not breast-fed.Reuse content