Effect of breastfeeding promotion interventions on child growth: a systematic review and meta-analysis

Elsa R J Giugliani, Bernardo L. Horta, Christian Loret de Mola, Bernardo O. Lisboa, Cesar G. Victora

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

AIM: To update a previous systematic review and meta-analyses about the effect of breastfeeding promotion interventions on child growth.

METHODS: Studies evaluating the effect of any type of breastfeeding promotion intervention on child weight, length (or height) and weight/height (or BMI) were screened. Papers published between 2006 and 2014 were checked using the following databases: PubMed/MEDLINE, Embase, Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews, Lilacs and SciELO.

RESULTS: Sixteen studies were added to 19 other studies identified in the previous review, resulting in 35 studies. Meta-analyses of studies reporting on mean weight, length, weight/length or BMI showed that the interventions had no impact on weight or length/height z scores [pooled effect: 0.03 (95% confidence interval: -0.06;0.12) and 0.03 (95% confidence interval: -0.02;0.08), respectively] and had a modest, but significant, reduction in body mass index/weight-for-height z scores [z score mean difference: -0.06 (95% confidence interval: -0.12;0.00)], which was limited to studies from low- and high-incomes settings. For all three outcomes, there was important heterogeneity among studies, which should be taken into account when interpreting the results.

CONCLUSION: Breastfeeding promotion interventions were not associated with significant changes in weight or length, but led to a modest, albeit significant, reduction in body mass index/weight-for-height z scores.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)20-29
Number of pages10
JournalActa Paediatrica, International Journal of Paediatrics
Volume104
Issue number467
DOIs
StatePublished - Dec 1 2015
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Anthropometry
  • Breastfeeding promotion
  • Child growth

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health

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