The next episode of Science and Cocktails features Shane Norris, from Wits University, on The first 1 000 days of how pregnancy and infancy shape the rest of our lives, followed by a musical performance brought by Amakat’ Amnyama.
What are the first 1 000 days? How do they influence the rest of our life? How does the nutrition of grandmothers, mothers and fathers influence development during the first 1 000 days? Does the preconception period and the 7 000 days after infancy matter? And what shift in public health thinking is needed to set up healthier trajectories for children in South Africa?
The First 1 000 Days – from conception to a child’s second birthday – is a unique period of opportunity when the foundations for health and development across a person’s lifespan are established. The right nutrition and care during the 1 000-day window influences not only whether the child will survive, but also his or her ability to grow, learn and rise out of poverty. As such, it contributes to society’s long-term health, stability and prosperity.
In this period, a child’s brain grows faster than at any other time. 80% of a baby’s brain is formed by the time they are two years old. For healthy brain development in these years, children need a safe, secure and loving environment, with the right nutrition and stimulation from their parents or caregivers. This is a window of opportunity to lay a foundation of health and well being whose benefits last a lifetime – and carry into the next generation.
Venue: The Orbit, 81 De Korte St, Braamfontein