The first 3 years of life represent a rapid and dynamic period of brain maturation
Most brain processes during the period are primarily focused on connecting the brain by myelination and formation of new brain connections
Early life nutrition is an important and modifiable factor that can shape myelination and subsequently cognitive outcomes
Sphingomyelin plays an important role in cognitive development via its structural and functional involvement in CNS myelination. Infancy and early childhood are critical windows for brain growth and cognitive development.
Malnutrition in the prenatal & postnatal periods may decrease myelin-specific lipids in the brain with major consequences on brain structure and function.
Human milk is the preferred source of nutrition for infants and naturally contains sphingomyelin!