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Breastfeeding and introduction of solid foods in Swedish infants: the All Babies in Southeast Sweden study

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  08 March 2007

Hilde K. Brekke*
Affiliation:
Department of Clinical Nutrition, Sahlgrenska Academy at Göteborg University, Box 459 40530, Göteborg, Sweden
Jonas F. Ludvigsson
Affiliation:
Paediatric Department, Örebro University Hospital, Örebro, Sweden Clinical Epidemiology Unit, Department of Medicine, Karolinska University Hospital, Karolinska, Sweden
Jenny van Odijk
Affiliation:
Department of Clinical Nutrition, Sahlgrenska Academy at Göteborg University, Box 459 40530, Göteborg, Sweden
Johnny Ludvigsson
Affiliation:
Division of Paediatrics and Diabetes Research Centre, Department of Molecular and Clinical Medicine, Faculty of Health Sciences, Linköping University, Linköping, Sweden
*
*Corresponding author: Dr Hilde K. Brekke, fax +46 31 82 94 75, email hilde.brekke@nutrition.gu.se
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Abstract

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The aim of this report is to describe breastfeeding duration and introduction of foods in Swedish infants born 1997–9, in relation to current recommendations. A secondary aim is to examine breastfeeding duration and introduction of certain allergenic foods in allergy-risk families (for whom allergy-preventive advice has been issued). Out of 21 700 invited infants, screening questionnaires were completed for 16 070 infants after delivery. Parents to 11 081 infants completed a follow-up questionnaire regarding breastfeeding and introduction of foods and 9849 handed in detailed food diaries at 1 year of age. The percentages of infants who were exclusively breast-fed at 3, 6 and ≥9 months of age were 78·4, 10·1 and 3·9, respectively. The corresponding percentages for partial breastfeeding were 87·8, 68·9 and 43·6. Gluten-containing foods were introduced to 66 % of infants between 4 and 6 months, as recommended at the time of the study, and one-quarter had stopped breastfeeding when gluten was introduced. More than 90 % of parents introduced the first sample of solid food during months 4–6, as recommended. Fish and eggs had been introduced during the first year in 43 % and 29 %, respectively, of infants with atopic heredity. Exclusive breastfeeding duration and time of introduction of solid foods, including gluten, seemed to have been in line with Swedish recommendations at the time, although gluten was often introduced late, and not during ongoing breastfeeding as recommended. The adherence to allergy-preventive advice was less than optimal in infants with atopic heredity.

Type
Research Article
Copyright
Copyright © The Nutrition Society 2005

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