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Original Articles

Infant and young child feeding (IYCF) practices from birth to 2 years: A longitudinal follow-up study in healthy children from Colombo, Sri Lanka

Authors:

Marianne Nishani Lucas ,

Faculty of Medicine, University of Colombo, LK
About Marianne Nishani

Department of Paediatrics,

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Nipun Srimal Edirisnghe,

University of Colombo, LK
About Nipun
Department of Paediatrics
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Pulani Lanerolle,

University of Colombo, LK
About Pulani
Department of Biochemistry and Molecular Biology
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Upul Senarath,

University of Colombo, LK
About Upul
Department of Community Medicine
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Andrew Peter Hills,

University of Tasmania, AU
About Andrew
School of Health Sciences
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Vithanage Pujitha Wickramasinghe

University of Colombo, LK
About Vithanage
Department of Paediatrics
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Abstract

Introduction: Optimal infant and young child feeding (IYCF) has the greatest potential impact on child survival and is the most important investment for good nutrition in the first 1000 days of life. Most available Sri Lankan IYCF data are cross-sectional making this the first longitudinal study undertaken from birth to 2 years on IYCF practices in Sri Lanka.

Objective: To describe adherence to IYCF guidelines in a group of healthy infants born at term gestation, from birth to 2 years of age, who were individually counselled at each visit

Method: Descriptive longitudinal study from 2015-2019, in Colombo, Sri Lanka. Babies without morbidity born to non-smoking mothers with a singleton pregnancy, at term gestation, aged more than 18 years, living in Colombo District, who intended to breastfeed and gave informed written consent, were recruited prior to delivery. All caregivers were counselled individually and followed up monthly and two-monthly in the first and second years respectively. IYCF practices were defined per 2021 UNICEF/WHO guideline.

Results:A total of 374 babies were recruited at birth. Exclusive Breast Feeding (EBF) was 100%, 96%, 92% and 72% at birth, 2, 4 and 6 months respectively. Formula feeding was 1-3%. Solid and semi-solid food (SSSF) were initiated between 6-8 months in 82%. Growth faltering was the commonest reason for early initiation of SSSF at 4-6 months. Minimum meal frequency was 98-100% at all ages. Minimum dietary diversity, minimum acceptable diet and egg and flesh food consumption were seen in 95% from 9-24 months. Responsive feeding was seen in 93% at 18-24 months.


Conclusions: Our study population demonstrated high adherence to IYCF guidelines most probably due to individualized counselling at each visit.


Sri Lanka Journal of Child Health, 2022; 51(3): 423-430

 

How to Cite: Lucas, M.N., Edirisnghe, N.S., Lanerolle, P., Senarath, U., Hills, A.P. and Wickramasinghe, V.P., 2022. Infant and young child feeding (IYCF) practices from birth to 2 years: A longitudinal follow-up study in healthy children from Colombo, Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka Journal of Child Health, 51(3), pp.423–430. DOI: http://doi.org/10.4038/sljch.v51i3.10243
Published on 05 Sep 2022.
Peer Reviewed

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