Evidences from studies in animal models and human beings are reviewed, showing the benefits produced by programed sensorial and psychosocial stimulation on neuro-behavioral functions of early malnourished individuals. It is emphasized that brain plasticity might play a fundamental role in this process. It is showed also that recent electrophysiological experiments - by using the cortical spreading depression technique - as well as observational studies in children indicate that brain regions may have a differential participation in the recovering of the brain and behavioral functions damaged by malnutrition. A new health care approach, taking into account that regional differences for treatment of children suffering early malnutrition, is suggested.
Nutrition disorders; Neuronal plasticity; Environmental enrichment