Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: November 27, 2007 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412953948 | Print ISBN: 9781412928168 | Online ISBN: 9781412953948| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Deborah L. Dee & Mary Tully
Human milk is the appropriate nutrition for infants. Exclusive breastfeeding for the first 6 months and continued breastfeeding with appropriate introduction of solids at 6 months reduces the risk of many illnesses and chronic diseases. The Healthy People 2010 breastfeeding goals are to increase to 75% the proportion of women who initiate breastfeeding, to 50% the proportion of women who are breastfeeding at 6 months, and to 25% the proportion of women who breastfeed for 1 year. The World Health Organization (WHO) recommends 6 months of exclusive breastfeeding, followed by the timely introduction of appropriate complementary foods, and continued breastfeeding for 2 years and beyond. Despite documentation and public knowledge of the health, social, and economic benefits of breastfeeding and recommendations from numerous organizations, including the American Academy of Pediatrics, the American Public Health Association, and the WHO, breastfeeding incidence, exclusivity, and duration are well below the goals identified in ...