Energy intake and growth of infants in Iceland-a population with high frequency of breast-feeding and high birth weight
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CitationEur J Clin Nutr. 2000, 54(9):695-701
AbstractOBJECTIVE: To investigate infants' energy intake and growth in a population with a high frequency of breast-feeding and high birth weight. DESIGN: The infants' consumption was recorded once a month from 1 to 12 months of age. At the ages of 2, 4, 6, 9 and 12 months all ingested food was weighed accurately to calculate nutrient intake. A control group participated at the age of 9 months. SETTING: Participants, who were born healthy, were recruited from four different maternity wards. Growth data were collected from healthcare centres and consumption data with parents' assistance from the infants' homes. SUBJECTS: Infants (n=250) were randomly selected and divided into a research group (n=180) and a control group (n=70). The research group participants numbered 138 (77%) and the control participants 57 (81%). RESULTS: Energy intake was lower than current recommendations but was similar to that found in recent studies. Growth, as a percentage of birth weight, correlated negatively with birth weight, with r=0.77 (P<0.001) for growth to 12 months. Infants breast-fed at 7 months of age gained less weight from 6 to 9 months, 1057+/-58 g, than those not breast-fed, 1498+/-130 g (P<0.001). Analysis of the control group's intake showed that participation in the study did not affect intake. CONCLUSION: The findings support the need for new recommendations on energy intake and new growth charts based on current knowledge about breast-fed infants. Birth weight is a determining factor of growth in infancy, and percentage weight gain during the first year of life increases as birth weight decreases. SPONSORSHIP: The Icelandic Research Council, The Research Fund of the University of Iceland, The Icelandic Nutrition Council, The Students' Innovation Fund, The Icelandic Dairy Marketing Board
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