The role of mother's BMI during breastfeeding

Document Type : Original Article


1 Professional PhD, Department of Health and Management, School of Health, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.

2 BSc of Public Health, Mashhad Health Center No. 3, Health Deputy, Mashhad University of Medical Sciences, Mashhad, Iran.


Introduction: Breast-feeding is one of the healthiest methods of child's nutrition. The mother's weight is one of the factors associated with breastfeeding. Regarding to the importance of nutrition with on infants' growth and development, this study was performed with aim to investigate the role of mothers' body mass index (BMI) in the success of exclusive nutrition with breastfeeding.
Methods: This cross-sectional study was performed on 400 women who had 6 months old infant referred to Mashhad Health Centers. Data collection tool was a questionnaire which was developed based on previous studies and sources. Data was collected by interviews with mothers and referring to health documents of families. Data was analyzed by SPSS software (version 16.5), and Chi-square and t-tests, ANOVA, Pearson Correlation and multivariable Regression tests. PResults: According to the results of this study, the mothers with normal BMI had more exclusive breastfeeding (P=0.028). In terms of maternal pre-pregnancy BMI, 193 mothers (34.2%) were in normal group, 27 (6.8%) lean, 137 (34.2%) overweight, and 43(10.75%) obese. Mean duration of exclusive breastfeeding was 142.78±58.34 days ranging 0-225 days. This mean in obese mothers degree 2 was 96.89±81.89 days, in obese mothers degree 1 was 134.35±62.26 days, in overweight mothers was 147.44±54.81 days,143/03±58/40 day, in normal BMI mothers was 143.03±58.40 days, and in lean mothers was 143.37±58.46 days.
Discussion: Mothers with normal BMI were more successful in exclusive breastfeeding. Therefore, follow-up of planning for balancing mother’s weight before pregnancy seems to be necessary. It is recommended to repeat the study to consider cultural differences.


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