Infant feeding practices in a deprived environment: a concern for early introduction of water and glucose D water to neonates.Nutr Health 1999; 13(1):11-21NH
The main objective of this study was to inquire from lactating mothers whether they were fully or partially practising exclusive breastfeeding in the first six months postnatally. Time of initiation of breast and complementary feedings, types of feeds and reasons for giving other feeds to infants apart from breast milk were also examined. The data were collected by structured pretested questionnaire. Of the 200 nursing mothers interviewed, 103 (51.5%) and 77 (38.5%) reported to have given water and glucose D water to neonates respectively within the first week of life. Sieved cornpap was the popular weaning diet. Time of introducing complementary feeding to infants, and nursing mothers' educational levels, were highly significantly related (P = 0.005). Surprisingly, none of the nursing mothers listed infant formula as one of the complementary feeds. It is concluded that there is a strong need to correct this unnecessary practice of giving water and glucose D water to neonates to prevent thirst and Jaundice respectively. The correction should commence with health workers and then the nursing mothers.