oa Central African Journal of Medicine - Calorie intake and intelligence: A study among bantu schoolchildren

Volume 12, Issue 4
  • ISSN : 0008-9176



(1) The results of a study on the relationship between intelligence and calorie intake are detailed. (2) The study was performed on 48 Bantu schoolgirls, new entrants to a secondary school in Zambia. (3) Calorie intake was found to vary from as low as 1, I 00 calories per day to 2,500 calories per day. There were 28 girls (58.3 per cent.) with an intake of 1,600 calories or less and only 7 (14.5 per cent.) with an intake of above 2,000 calories per day. (4) The mean scores in the intelligence tests varied from 104.0 among those with a calorie intake of 1,200 or less to 112.8 among those with a daily intake in excess of 2,000 calories. (5) There was no significant difference between the means statistically, but it is felt that the tendency to higher scores in the groups with better diets is suggestive that poor diet may be a limiting factor in the development of intelligence potential.

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