Journal of Food and Nutrition Research
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Journal of Food and Nutrition Research. 2018, 6(2), 82-88
DOI: 10.12691/jfnr-6-2-3
Open AccessArticle

Infant Feeding Practices in the First Year of Life in a Metropolitan Italian Cohort

Giulia Cinelli1, Marta Fabrizi1, Blegina Shashaj1, Giuseppe De Matteis1, 2, Giorgio Bedogni3, Donatella Comparcola4, Stefania Ruggeri5, Valerio Nobili4 and Melania Manco1,

1Research Unit for Multifactorial Disease, Bambino Gesù Children’s Hospital, IRCCS (Istituto di Ricovero e Cura a Carattere Scientifico), viale di San Paolo 15, Rome 00146, Italy

2Department of Internal and Emergency Medicine, Catholic University of the Sacred Heart, Rome, Italy

3Clinical Epidemiology Unit, Liver Research Center Basovizza, Trieste, Italy

4Hepato-Metabolic Disease Unit, Bambino Gesù Children's Hospital and IRCCS, Rome, Italy

5CREA- Alimenti e Nutrizione, Via Ardeatina, 546 00178 Rome, Italy

Pub. Date: February 08, 2018

Cite this paper:
Giulia Cinelli, Marta Fabrizi, Blegina Shashaj, Giuseppe De Matteis, Giorgio Bedogni, Donatella Comparcola, Stefania Ruggeri, Valerio Nobili and Melania Manco. Infant Feeding Practices in the First Year of Life in a Metropolitan Italian Cohort. Journal of Food and Nutrition Research. 2018; 6(2):82-88. doi: 10.12691/jfnr-6-2-3


Infant feeding choices are pivotal for growth and may affect the risk of overweight later in life. The objective of the study was to explore: (i) adherence to World Health Organization (WHO, exclusive breast feeding, BF, in the first 6 months) and European Society for Paediatric Gastroenterology Hepatology and Nutrition (ESPHGAN, complementary feeding, CF, between 17 and 26 weeks of age and cow’s milk introduction at 1 year of age) recommendations; (ii) and the effect of these practice on infants’ anthropometrics and adiposity at 1 year of age. The study was based on the sample of infants (n = 462) from the “Feeding” cohort whose feeding behaviours were monthly investigated from birth to 1 year of age and anthropometrics, thickness of epicardial adipose (EAT), abdominal subcutaneous, and visceral adipose tissues, measured at 1 year of age. Exclusively breast-fed infants were 69.5% (n=321) at birth but 19.9% (n=92) at 6 months of age. CF was introduced at the median age of 5 (4-6), with 64.5% (n=298) of infants complying the ESPHGAN guidelines, while cow’s milk was introduced at the age of 11 (10-12) months. Age of CF was associated with weight-to-length ratio (coeff.= -0.002, 95% CI -0.003 to -0.000, p = 0.018, r). Age of cow’s milk introduction with weight-to-length ratio as well (coeff.= 0.001, 95% CI 0.000, 0.002, p=0.025; and EAT (coeff.=0.038, 95% CI 0.012 to 0.063, p = 0.004) at 1-y. Feeding practices complied with WHO recommendations in one infant out of five, and ESPHGAN recommendations in about seven out of ten. Early CF and cow’s milk were both associated with anthropometrics at 1-y, while exclusively BF was not.

infant diet breastfeeding formula feeding complementary feeding growth visceral adiposity

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