Randomized Controlled Trial of a Primary Care-Based Child Obesity Prevention Intervention on Infant Feeding Practices

Rachel S. Gross, Alan L. Mendelsohn, Michelle B. Gross, Roberta Scheinmann, Mary Jo Messito

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20 Scopus citations

Abstract

Objective To determine the effects of a child obesity prevention intervention, beginning in pregnancy, on infant feeding practices in low-income Hispanic families. Study design The Starting Early randomized controlled trial enrolled pregnant women at a third trimester visit. Women (n = 533) were randomly allocated to a standard care control group or an intervention group participating in prenatal and postpartum individual nutrition/breastfeeding counseling and subsequent nutrition and parenting support groups coordinated with well-child visits. Outcome measures included infant feeding practices and maternal infant feeding knowledge at infant age 3 months, using questions adapted from the Infant Feeding Practices Study II and an infant 24-hour diet recall. Results A total of 456 families completed 3-month assessments. The intervention group had higher prevalence of exclusive breastfeeding on the 24-hour diet recall (42.7% vs 33.0%, P =.04) compared with controls. The intervention group reported a higher percentage of breastfeeding vs formula feeding per day (mean [SD] 67.7 [39.3] vs 59.7 [39.7], P =.03) and was less likely to introduce complementary foods and liquids compared with controls (6.3% vs 16.7%, P =.001). The intervention group had higher maternal infant feeding knowledge scores (Cohen d, 0.29, 95% CI.10-.48). The effect of Starting Early on breastfeeding was mediated by maternal infant feeding knowledge (Sobel test 2.86, P =.004). Conclusions Starting Early led to increased exclusive breastfeeding and reduced complementary foods and liquids in 3-month-old infants. Findings document a feasible and effective infrastructure for promoting breastfeeding in families at high risk for obesity in the context of a comprehensive obesity prevention intervention.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)171-177.e2
JournalJournal of Pediatrics
Volume174
DOIs
StatePublished - Jul 1 2016

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Keywords

  • Feeding knowledge
  • Hispanic
  • Pregnancy

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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