Thursday, January 16, 2014

Obese Moms Breastfeed Longer: Study

Okay, it's a small study, but obese women get so much bad news, don't they deserve some good news?


The potential that obesity in pregnancy has to affect symptoms associated with eating disorders and breastfeeding is unclear.


This study analyzed symptoms of eating disorders and breastfeeding practices in obese mothers.


Prospective, case-control study.


Participants included 25 obese (BMI>30kg/m2) and 25 normal-weight puerperae, matched for parity and delivery route.


The participants completed the Eating Disorders Inventory (EDI-2), investigating cognitive, emotional, and behavioral symptoms of eating disorders before they were discharged from the maternity hospital and later participated in telephone interviews concerning breastfeeding practices which were classified according to WHO definitions.


Although none of the scores fell in the pathological range, the obese mothers had more and more pronounced symptoms of eating disorders in all EDI-2 subscales with respect to normal-weight mothers. They had, in particular, significantly higher scores in body dissatisfaction (p<.0001), ineffectiveness (p=.004), interoceptive awareness (p=.005), and maturity fear (p=.007). Finally, while breastfeeding practices were similar in the two groups, the obese mothers were more likely to maintain full breastfeeding at 6 months (20 vs 8%) and their tendency to postpone weaning was found to be significant (p<.04).


While the obese mothers studied have more pronounced symptoms of eating disorders with respect to their normal-
weight counterparts, they tended to maintain breastfeeding longer, postponing weaning.