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Patterns and predictors of food texture introduction in French children aged 4–36 months

  • Lauriane Demonteil (a1) (a2), Eléa Ksiazek (a1), Agnès Marduel (a2), Marion Dusoulier (a2), Hugo Weenen (a3), Carole Tournier (a1) and Sophie Nicklaus (a1)...

Abstract

The aims of this study were to describe which and when food textures are offered to children between 4 and 36 months in France and to identify the associated factors. An online cross-sectional survey was designed, including questions about 188 food texture combinations representing three texture levels: purées (T1), soft small pieces (T2) and hard/large pieces and double textures (T3). Mothers indicated which combinations they already offered to their child. A food texture exposure score (TextExp) was calculated for all of the texture levels combined and for each texture level separately. Associations between TextExp and maternal and child characteristics and feeding practices were explored by multiple linear regressions, per age class. Answers from 2999 mothers living in France, mostly educated and primiparous, were analysed. Over the first year, children were mainly exposed to purées. Soft and small pieces were slowly introduced between 6 and 22 months, whereas hard/large pieces were mainly introduced from 13 months onwards. TextExp was positively associated with children’s number of teeth and ability to eat alone with their finger or a fork. For almost all age classes, TextExp was higher in children introduced to complementary feeding earlier, lower for children who were offered only commercial baby foods and higher for those who were offered only home-made/non-specific foods during the second year. Our study shows that until 12 months of age the majority of French children were exposed to pieces to a small extent. It provides new insights to further understand the development of texture acceptance during a key period for the development of eating habits.

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Corresponding author

*Corresponding author: S. Nicklaus, fax +33 380693227, email sophie.nicklaus@inra.fr

References

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Patterns and predictors of food texture introduction in French children aged 4–36 months

  • Lauriane Demonteil (a1) (a2), Eléa Ksiazek (a1), Agnès Marduel (a2), Marion Dusoulier (a2), Hugo Weenen (a3), Carole Tournier (a1) and Sophie Nicklaus (a1)...

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