Revista Brasileira de Saúde Materno Infantil
On-line version ISSN 1806-9304
SPYRIDES, Maria Helena Constantino; STRUCHINER, Cláudio José; BARBOSA, Maria Tereza Serrano and KAC, Gilberto. The effect of breastfeeding practices on infant growth. Rev. Bras. Saude Mater. Infant. [online]. 2005, vol.5, n.2, pp.145-153. ISSN 1806-9304. http://dx.doi.org/10.1590/S1519-38292005000200002.
ABSTRACT There are several factors influencing infant growth including pre and post-natal ones. The influence of breastfeeding practices in the first year of life is central to assessment of infant growth patterns. The objective of this paper is to review the results in the literature gathering useful information related to the effect of breastfeeding practices on infants' growth pattern. It contains a brief description of child growth determinants, with data on some studies developed to assess the effect of breastfeeding practices on child growth during the first year of life and describes some topics related to the introduction of complementary food. The terms "Breastfeeding practices", "infant growth" and "weight" were search according to Medical Subjects Headings (MESH) in MEDLINES. Disagreement with regard to the optimum moment to introduce complementary food and to what extent the exclusive breastfeeding practices supply the increase of nutritional requirements, in the first year of life, led to a change in the World Health Organization's recommendations in 2001. Several studies have been developed showing significant differences on growth patterns among breastfed infants and the ones receiving formulas or complementary food.
Keywords : Growth; Breast feeding; Anthropometry; Nutritional status.