Background and Aims A retrospective analysis of healthy Japanese children was conducted to determine whether the growth pattern is altered by breast-feeding (BF) or formula-feeding (FF).
Methods The data of 204 elementary students, age 6 to 9 years were obtained from their parents by questionnaires. The BF and FF group were defined as those fed by only breast milk or formula at 4 months of age. Seventy-one children (31 boys, 40 girls) were in BF and 30 (19 boys, 11 girls) were in FF. The anthropometric data at birth, 1, 4, 7, 10, 18, 36 months-old and investigation time in BF was compared to those in FF.
Result No significant differences were observed in the anthropometric data between BF and FF girls. The BF boys mean body weight (BW) at 18 months was almost 1,000g lower than those in FF. The BW-SD score was significantly smaller from 4 to18 months, and BMI was lower from 10 to 36 months in BF boys. However, both BWSD and BMI had no differences between BF and FF boys from 6 to 9 years. Multiple regression analyses showed that the birth weight, prepregnancy BW, and infant feeding choice were significant factors associated with BWSD, and feeding choice was the only significant factor associated with BMI at 18 and 36 months.
Conclusion Infant feeding choices may have gender effect on growth during infancy. When we evaluate infant growth, we should consider not only infant feeding choices, but also gender, birth weight and prepregnancy BW.