Nutrition Changes Your IQ
Nutrition and IQ
IQ Damage from Sugar
High IQ Diet
Nutrition and IQ
Good genetics has a significant effect on your intelligence quotient (IQ), but a healthy diet and sufficiently challenging upbringing can have a huge, perhaps greater effect on your IQ. Children are generally not encouraged to be inquisitive, or taught how to study and learn. The human brain is extremely plastic and IQ can even change in adults. Over a lifetime, deficiencies in a few basic nutrients can make the difference between being well above average in intelligence through to being unable to function normally in modern society and having to live and work in sheltered conditions.
The most important mineral for mental health and the ability to learn, solve problems, navigate and memory and recall is iodine. (8, 9) Good iodine sufficiency is correlated with intelligence, and iodine deficiency can cause a loss of 15 IQ points in an adult and 13 points in a child. Iodine sufficiency is essential during pregnancy and breastfeeding.
Zinc sufficiency is another essential for good mental function. Children's IQ, intellectual development and personality features significantly improve with zinc sufficiency. (6)
Copper and magnesium are also required for a healthy brain and psychology.
Sufficient iron is required for brain development. Children suffering from iron deficiency anaemia (IDA) had a 12.9 point lower IQ in one study. An increase of up to 4.8 points occurred after treatment of the IDA, but these children still had a lifelong IQ handicap. (1)
IQ Damage from Sugar
The most harmful, brain-damaging aspect of our diet is sugar and its continual use. Type 2 diabetes increases the risk of dementia, Alzheimer's disease and many other mental pathologies. (3, 4, 5) There is a significant decrease in verbal IQ (7.84 points) and general IQ (6.12 points) in diabetes patients compared to healthy people. (4)
Patients who were diagnosed with diabetes at younger than 6 years of age saw the largest decreases in verbal IQ (10.52 points), performance IQ (9.45 points) and general IQ (11.38 points). Patients with later-onset (older than 6 years of age) diabetes saw a decrease in verbal IQ (6.67 points), though performance and general IQ were not affected in this study. (4)
Verbal IQ decreased by 11.02 points in patients who had experienced multiple episodes of hypoglycaemia with seizures, compared to a decrease of 5.43 points in patients who did not experience seizures. (4)
Excess Insulin is particularly damaging to cognitive function and development. An obese person's baseline insulin level can be up to three times higher than that of a healthy person.
Another study found that a high consumption of sugar, in the form of sucrose, lactose, fructose, sugar-sweetened beverages, sugar-sweetened cakes and desserts is associated with a lower Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) score, after adjusting for covariates. On the other hand, the consumption of cooked dishes and fruits was significantly associated with a better MMSE score. (7)
Excessive sugar is associated with psychological instability, often by being destructive and insane.
High IQ Diet
Hungry children perform less well in IQ tests. Children need sufficient nutritious food to perform at their capability. The problem with most children is keeping them off sugary foods and on a healthy nutrient-rich diet. For adults, fasting is an excellent way to "clear" the brain and recover from sugar abuse. (2)
A high-intelligence diet has no added sugar and no processed foods. It is based on seafood, shellfish, red meat, sea vegetables and land vegetables, particularly green vegetables and rainbow salads.
See the Grow Youthful diet.
Sufficient sunlight and vitamin D is also essential for good brain function and healthy psychology.
1. Agaoglu L, Torun O, Unuvar E, Sefil Y, Demir D.
Effects of iron deficiency anemia on cognitive function in children.
Arzneimittelforschung. 2007;57(6A):426-30. doi: 10.1055/s-0031-1296691. PMID: 17691592.
2. E Pollitt, N L Lewis, C Garza, R J Shulman. Fasting and cognitive function. J Psychiatr Res. 1982;17(2):169-74. doi: 10.1016/0022-3956(82)90018-8. PMID: 6764933 DOI: 10.1016/0022-3956(82)90018-8.
3. Matteo Spinelli, Salvatore Fusco, Claudio Grassi. Brain Insulin Resistance and Hippocampal Plasticity: Mechanisms and Biomarkers of Cognitive Decline. Neurosci., 31 July 2019.
4. Ashleigh Lin, Elisabeth A. Northam, George A. Werther, Fergus J. Cameron. Risk Factors for Decline in IQ in Youth With Type 1 Diabetes Over the 12 Years From Diagnosis/Illness Onset. Diabetes Care 1 February 2015; 38 (2): 236-242.
5. Laws, S.M., Gaskin, S., Woodfield, A. et al. Insulin resistance is associated with reductions in specific cognitive domains and increases in CSF tau in cognitively normal adults. Sci Rep 7, 9766 (2017). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41598-017-09577-4.
6. Ezzat Khodashenas , Ashraf Mohammadzadeh , Mehdi Sohrabi , Azra Izanloo. The Effect of Zinc Supplementation on Cognitive Performance in Schoolchildren. Int J Pediatr, Vol.3, N.6-1, Serial No.23, Nov 2015.
7. Chong CP, Shahar S, Haron H, Din NC. abitual sugar intake and cognitive impairment among multi-ethnic Malaysian older adults. H Clin Interv Aging. 2019 Jul 22;14:1331-1342. doi: 10.2147/CIA.S211534. PMID: 31413554; PMCID: PMC6662517.
8. Levie D, Korevaar TIM, Bath SC, Murcia M, Dineva M, Llop S, Espada M, van Herwaarden AE, de Rijke YB, Ibarluzea JM, Sunyer J, Tiemeier H, Rayman MP, Guxens M, Peeters RP. Association of Maternal Iodine Status With Child IQ: A Meta-Analysis of Individual Participant Data. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2019 Dec 1;104(12):5957-5967. doi: 10.1210/jc.2018-02559. PMID: 30920622; PMCID: PMC6804415.
9. Choudhry H, Nasrullah M. Iodine consumption and cognitive performance: Confirmation of adequate consumption. Food Sci Nutr. 2018 Jun 1;6(6):1341-1351. doi: 10.1002/fsn3.694. Erratum in: Food Sci Nutr. 2021 Jan 19;9(2):1256. PMID: 30258574; PMCID: PMC6145226.