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Int J Nurs Stud. 2007 May;44(4):589-600. Epub 2006 Apr 25.

The opinions of employed mothers about their own nutrition during lactation: a questionnaire survey.

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Akdeniz Universitesi Antalya Saglik Yuksekokulu, Dumlupinar Bulvari 07058 Kampus Antalya, Türkiye.



The main purpose of the study was to identify the changes employed mothers of infants aged 0-24 months made in their nutrition with the aim of increasing their milk production and extending their breastfeeding period.


The 135 full-time employed mothers enrolled in this study came to the Well-Child Clinic at Akdeniz University Hospital. Dietary data were collected from the mothers via a questionnaire prepared by the researchers to elicit details about what kind of foods or nutrition supplements women added, avoided or were recommended to avoid or add to their diets and why.


All the mothers made changes in their diets while breastfeeding. The number one change that mothers made in their diet in order to increase milk production was to increase their fluid intake (38.6%) while the second was to increase their consumption of sweets (25.3%). The main type of food mothers were advised to avoid were dried legumes and grains (28.9%). The most important reason for this was the belief that they increased the chance of newborn colic (89.4%). There were statistically significant differences between foods avoided by breastfeeding mothers related to their age (chi(2)=6.88, p=.009), education level and those who mentioned increasing their consumption of fluid while breastfeeding (chi(2)=13.12, p=.000).


All of the mothers espoused specific practices, and had been given recommendations by others about their nutrition while breastfeeding. Mothers need to be informed about the factors that increase and decrease milk production and affect infant colic, and should be encouraged that they can successfully breastfeed without increasing their consumption of sweets or avoiding dried legumes and some vegetables.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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