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Initiating complementary feeding: a decision influenced by the child's growth?

Abstract : Background and aims: Infant feeding practices are subject to multiple influences. The age of onset of complementary feeding (CF) varies according to many factors such as maternal characteristics (smoking, age, education level, body size, country of birth) or infant characteristics (sex) (Bournez et al., 2017). The aim was to study if, in addition to these factors, age could depend on the child's growth. We have hypothesized that larger children (or heavier / more corpulent ones) would be introduced to CF earlier than "average"-sized children would. Methods: Data from the ELFE cohort (French Longitudinal Study since Childhood) made it possible to describe the age of CF, and to model estimates growth at different ages. We evaluated associations between length, weight, body mass, estimated growth rates at 3 months of age (i.e. before the minimum age of 4 months recommended for CF), and age of CF initiation, using linear regressions adjusted for potential confounders, for 9078 children. Results: Children with a higher weight, a higher length at the age of 3 months and growing the fastest between birth and 3 months were more likely to be introduced to CF earlier, especially before 4 months. It confirms the hypothesis that the decision to initiate CF could be influenced, consciously or not, by the fact that the child grows (in weight and length) rapidly. Conclusions : infants who are heavier, taller, or growing more quickly at 3 months were introduced to CF earlier, before 4 months.
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Conference papers
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Contributor : Sabine Julien <>
Submitted on : Thursday, September 17, 2020 - 10:20:09 AM
Last modification on : Tuesday, November 17, 2020 - 5:38:01 PM


  • HAL Id : hal-02941545, version 1



Sophie Nicklaus, Marie Bournez, Eléa Ksiazek, Marion Taine, Barbara Heude, et al.. Initiating complementary feeding: a decision influenced by the child's growth?. 7. international conference on Nutrition and growth, Aug 2020, London, United Kingdom. ⟨hal-02941545⟩



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