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Fish for Mental Fitness

According to a new study published in Acta Paediatrica, a monthly international, peer-reviewed, pediatric research journal, 15-year-old males who ate fish at least once a week had higher cognitive skills at age 18 than those who ate it less frequently.

The study, called "Fish Intake of Swedish Male Adolescents is a Predictor of Cognitive Performance," examined fish consumption in healthy teenage Swedish boys at age 15 to see if it was associated in any way with intelligetnce at age 18.  In conducting the study, researchers compared the responses of the 3,972 males who took part in the study at age 15, with their cognitive scores recorded three years later when they entered compulsory military service.  Researchers found a definite link between frequent fish consumption and cognitive function.

Researchers found that 58 percent of study responsdents ate fish at least once a week, while 20 percent ate fish more than once a week.  When the young men ate fish more than once a week, their combined intelligence scores were, on average, almost 11 percent higher than those who ate fish less than once a week.  Boys who consumed fish once a week scored almost seven percent higher on their combined intelligence scores. Verbal scores were about nine percent higher than those who ate fish less than once a week, and those who ate fish once a week scored about four precent higher.

This same pattern was also seen in visuospatial scores, with those who ate fish more than once a week scoring about 11 percent higher than those who consumed it less than once a week.