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Ann Nutr Metab. 2013;63(1-2):145-51. doi: 10.1159/000354431. Epub 2013 Aug 24.

Nutrient intake in infancy and body mass index at six years in two population-based cohorts recruited before and after revision of infant dietary recommendations.

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Unit for Nutrition Research, Landspitali-The National University Hospital of Iceland and Faculty of Food Science and Nutrition, University of Iceland, Reykjavik, Iceland.



The dietary intake in infancy can affect growth and the risk of childhood overweight. The aim of this study was to compare the nutrient intake in infancy and the body mass index (BMI) at age 6 years in two population-based cohorts recruited before and after the revision of infant dietary recommendations.


Two randomly selected population-based cohorts were recruited at birth and studied until 12 months of age and again at 6 years of age. Subjects were 90 and 170 children born in 1995-1996 and 2005, respectively. The dietary intake at 9 and 12 months was assessed via weighed food records. The height and weight from birth to age 12 months and at age 6 years were measured.


The contribution of protein to the total energy intake (E%) was significantly lower in the 2005 cohort than in the 1995-1996 cohort [11.9 vs. 14.4 E% (p < 0.001) at 9 months and 14.6 vs. 15.6 E% (p = 0.016) at 12 months]. Relatively fewer children were classified as being overweight (including obese) in the 2005 cohort, i.e. 12 versus 21% (p = 0.045).


The emphasis placed on the revised infant dietary recommendations resulted in a lower protein intake in the latter half of the first year. Changes in the infants' diets on the population level might have contributed to the lower overweight prevalence seen in the 2005 cohort.

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