Relation between physical growth and information processing in infants born in India

Child Dev. 1994 Jun;65(3):889-902.


The relation between physical growth and cognitive development in infants growing up in India was examined in this study. Subjects were 183 5-12-month-olds. Weight and length, two anthropometric measures commonly used to index nutritional status in developing countries, related to infant measures of visual recognition memory and tactual-visual cross-modal transfer. Underweight infants performed relatively poorly on both cognitive measures and failed to show the clear age-related improvements in speed of processing found among the heavier infants. Weight and length correlated with both measures of infant cognition, r = .25 to r = .45, as did, to a lesser degree, head circumference. Although birthweight, previous illness, and parental education were also related to development, the relations between infant growth and cognition remained significant even after these variables were statistically controlled.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Anthropometry
  • Body Weight
  • Child Development*
  • Cognition
  • Family
  • Humans
  • India
  • Infant
  • Memory
  • Mental Processes*
  • Photic Stimulation
  • Visual Perception