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The Effect of Exclusive Breastfeeding Practice on Maternal Anthropometry and Body Fat Changes

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Background: Exclusive breastfeeding practice is recommended for infants aged 0–6 months with a variety of benefits for infants and mothers. However, nursing mothers have greater nutritional requirements than non-breastfeeding mothers in order to produce breast milk and for metabolic needs of mothers’ bodies. The good nutritional status of mother during lactation leads to successful breastfeeding. However, almost all of mother had inadequate dietary intake. This study aimed to investigate the changes in anthropometric profiles of exclusively and non-exclusively breastfeeding mothers in Puskesmas Gayamsari, Semarang, Central Java Province, Indonesia. Method: It was an analytic cohort research of 8 weeks duration, with 16 exclusively breastfeeding mothers and 16 non-exclusively breastfeeding mothers as respondents. Respondents’ general characteristics were collected by structured interviews. Anthropometric assessments of body weight, height, MUAC and body fat percentage were collected on recruitment into the study and at the 8 weeks time point. Results: There were no significant differences on BMI, MUAC and body fat percentage between the groups at baseline and end of the study. There were significant differences in BMI changes (Δ) between EBF and non EBF group (−0.2±0.6 kg/m2 vs. 0.3±0.4 kg/m2, respectively). There was a tendency that the decrease in body fat percentage among EBF group was greater than the non EBF group (0.3±1.0% vs. 0±1.8%). Conclusion: Exclusive breastfeeding practice can reduce maternal body fat percentage and BMI. Nutritional intervention to breastfeeding mothers should be addressed to maintain the mothers’ nutritional status.
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Keywords: Body Fat; Body Mass Index; Exclusive Breastfeeding; Maternal Anthropometry

Document Type: Research Article

Affiliations: Department of Public Health Nutrition, Faculty of Public Health, Diponegoro University, 50239, Semarang, Central Java Province, Indonesia

Publication date: April 1, 2017

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