eISSN: 2450-5722
ISSN: 2450-5927
Journal of Health Inequalities
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1/2022
vol. 8
 
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abstract:
Original paper

Eating habits and nutritional adequacy in breastfeeding and formula-feeding mothers. A pilot study

Jolanta Nurek
1
,
Magdalena Warchoł
2
,
Kinga Mikrut
3
,
Zuzanna Buchwald
4
,
Hanna Krauss
5
,
Zuzanna Chęcińska-Maciejewska
5
,
Magdalena Gibas-Dorna
6

1.
Specialist Medical Practice, Poznan, Poland
2.
College of Health, Beauty Care and Education in Poznan, Poland
3.
Department of Physiology, Poznan University of Medical Sciences, Poland
4.
Institute of Chemical Technology and Engineering, Poznan University of Technology, Poland
5.
President Stanisław Wojciechowski Calisia University, Kalisz, Poland
6.
Collegium Medicum, Institute of Health Sciences, University of Zielona Gora, Poland
J Health Inequal 2022; 8 (1): 44–55
Online publish date: 2022/03/22
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Introduction
Dietary pattern and nutritional adequacy strongly affect maternal health and overall condition during early motherhood. Studies on dietary behaviour in breastfeeding (BF) and formula-feeding (FF) mothers are sparce and need to be updated regularly. During the COVID-19 pandemic, being metaboli­cally healthy and boosting the immune system by having a well-balanced diet is a matter of particular importance. We aimed to identify whether maternal eating patterns are consistent with nutritional stan­dards for breastfeeding and non-pregnant non-breastfeeding healthy women during postpartum.

Material and methods
Exclusively BF and exclusively FF mothers were recruited for this pilot study. Energy and nutrient intakes were estimated using 7-day food records. For qualitative and quantitative analysis of food intake, Dietetyk 2016 computer software was used, and data were compared with Polish standards. The obtained results were also compared between 2 study groups.

Results
The following daily dietary references were used: estimated energy requirement (EER) – for energy, reference intake (RI) – for fats and carbohydrates, and estimated average requirement (EAR), adequate intake (AI), recommended maximum intake – for other tested nutrients. Dietary intake differed between BF and FF groups in terms of calories, carbohydrates, digestible carbohydrates, cholesterol, proteins, folate, and fluid consumption. All of them were higher in BF mothers. Maternal diet was characterised by insufficient intake of the following: energy, fibre, fluids, calcium, vitamin D, folates, and excessive consumption of iron.

Conclusions
Maternal nutritional behaviours do not conform to dietary recommendations, and stan­dards dedicated to exclusively FF mothers are required. There is a need for specialistic counselling pro­viding a valuable understanding about a safe and well-balanced diet for all postpartum mothers.

keywords:

breastfeeding, dietary recommendations, maternal health, formula-feeding, nutritional adequacy

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