Betoko A; Lioret S; Heude B; Hankard R; Carles S; Forhan A; Regnault N; Botton J; Charles MA; Eden M-CC. - - Pediatr Obes 2017; in press

Influence of infant feeding patterns over the first year of life on growth from birth to 5 years

OBJECTIVES: As early-life feeding experiences may influence later health, we aimed to examine relations between feeding patterns over the first year of life and child’s growth in the first 5 years of life.

METHODS: Our analysis included 1022 children from the EDEN mother-child cohort. Three feeding patterns were previously identified, i.e. ‘Later dairy products introduction and use of ready-prepared baby foods’ (pattern-1), ‘Long breastfeeding, later main meal food introduction and use of home-made foods’ (pattern-2) and ‘Use of ready-prepared adult foods’ (pattern-3). Associations between the feeding patterns and growth [weight, height and body mass index {BMI}] were analysed by multivariable linear regressions. Anthropometric changes were assessed by the final value adjusted for the initial value.

RESULTS: Even though infant feeding patterns were not related to anthropometric measurements at 1, 3 and 5 years, high scores on pattern-1 were associated with higher 1-3 years weight and height changes. High scores on pattern-2 were related to lower 0-1 year weight and height changes, higher 1-5 years weight and height changes but not to BMI changes, after controlling for a wide range of potential confounding variables including parental BMI. Scores on pattern-3 were not significantly related to growth. Additional adjustment for breastfeeding duration reduced the strength of the associations between pattern-2 and growth but not those between pattern-1 and height growth.

CONCLUSION: Our findings emphasize the relevance of considering infant feeding patterns including breastfeeding duration, age of complementary foods introduction as well as type of foods used when examining effects of early infant feeding practices on later health. (c) 2017 World Obesity Federation.