Date of Award
Master of Science in Vision Science
Lee Ann Remington
Several recent studies have shown that breast-feeding leads to optimal visual and cognitive development in human children. This study evaluated the possible long-term effects that breast milk might have on vision. The subjects, 49 optometry students from Pacific University, completed a survey indicating whether they were breast-fed or formula-fed. A brief visual screening battery of tests followed. Subjects were placed into the breast-fed group if they had been breast-fed for 3 months or more. They were placed into the formula-fed group if they were breast-fed less than 3 months, or completely formula-fed. The results showed no significant difference between the breast-fed and formula-fed groups in regards to visual acuity, stereoacuity, refractive error, eye motilities, distance cover test, or red lens test. However, there was a significant difference between the groups for the near cover test. Additional research should include a longitudinal study of children into early adult-hood to measure whether visual performance is enhanced in those infants fed breast milk compared to those fed with formula.
Mattson, Anne, "An evaluation of the effects of breast milk on vision: A study of the long term effects in adults" (1999). College of Optometry. 1283.