Infant feeding and obesity at 11 years: Prospective birth cohort study

Marilda Borges Neutzling, Pedro Rodrigues Curi Hallal, Cora Luiza Pavin Araújo, Bernardo Lessa Horta, Maria de Fátima Alves Vieira, Ana Maria Baptista Menezes, Cesar Gomes Victora

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

36 Scopus citations


Objective. To evaluate the association between breastfeeding duration, introduction of solid or semi-solid foods before four months of age and overweight/obesity at 11 years. Methods. Prospective population-based birth cohort study, including 1 204 adolescents aged 11 years who were born in Pelotas (Brazil), in 1993, and were previously interviewed at birth, six and 12 months of age. Five explanatory variables were used: duration of any breastfeeding, duration of exclusive or predominant breastfeeding, ever breastfeeding, introduction of solid or semi-solid foods before four months of age, and feeding pattern at four months of age. Risk of overweight was defined as body mass index (BMI) ≥85th percentile, and obesity was defined as BMI ≥85th percentile plus triceps and subscapular skinfolds ≥90th percentile, using the National Center for Health Statistics curves. Results. The prevalence of risk of overweight and obesity at 11 years were 23.2% and 11.6%, respectively. The lowest prevalence of both outcomes was found among subjects who were breastfed for one to three months. However, tests for linear trend or heterogeneity did not result in a significant association between breastfeeding indicators and anthropometry at 11 years. Adjustment for sex, skin color, birth weight, maternal schooling, smoking during pregnancy and maternal pre-pregnancy BMI did not alter the findings. Conclusions. Our results do not supportthe hypothesis that breastfeeding has a long-term lasting effect on anthropometry in this population.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)143-149
Number of pages7
JournalInternational Journal of Pediatric Obesity
Issue number3
StatePublished - 2009
Externally publishedYes


  • Adiposity
  • Cohort studies
  • Infant feeding
  • Longitudinal
  • Obesity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health
  • Health Policy
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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