A positive association between extended breast-feeding and nutritional status in rural Hubei Province, People's Republic of China

Douglas Taren, Jing Chen

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Data were analyzed from a cross-sectional nutrition surveillance survey to determine the association between extended breast-feeding and growth. The sample consisted of 2148 initially breast-fed children between 12 and 47 mo of age. Breast-feeding for > 24 mo was associated with a greater height-for-age Z score, and breast-feeding for > 18 mo was associated with greater weight-for-age and weight-for-height Z scores. These results remained significant after the number of food groups being consumed at 12 mo of age, age when the selected food items were first given to a child, the consumption of powdered milk, recent infections, age, sex, birth order, birth weight, county of residence, father's occupation, and mother's education were controlled for. These results suggest that extended breast-feeding in this population, in which food was introduced late in infancy, was associated with improved nutritional status as measured by standard anthropometric indicators.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)862-867
Number of pages6
JournalAmerican Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Issue number6
StatePublished - Dec 1993



  • Anthropometric measurements
  • Breast-feeding
  • Growth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

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