Annals of SBV

Register      Login

VOLUME 8 , ISSUE 1 ( January-June, 2019 ) > List of Articles


Breastfeeding and Health Outcomes: A Narrative Review

Sahaya S Thresa

Keywords : Breastfeeding, Colostrum, Infant

Citation Information : Thresa SS. Breastfeeding and Health Outcomes: A Narrative Review. 2019; 8 (1):9-12.

DOI: 10.5005/jp-journals-10085-8103

License: CC BY-NC 4.0

Published Online: 08-08-2020

Copyright Statement:  Copyright © 2019; The Author(s).


Introduction: India is home to a large number of under-five deaths and underweight children in the world, which is mainly because of improper breastfeeding practices. Breastfeeding is one of the most effective ways to ensure child health and survival. Lack of exclusive breastfeeding during the first 6 months of life contributes to over a million avoidable child deaths each year. Materials and methods: An extensive search of all materials related to the topic was carried out in PubMed, Medline, World Health Organization website, and Google Scholar search engines. Keywords used in the search included breastfeeding, colostrum, and infant. Overall, 30 articles were selected and analyzed. Results: Parameters like educational status, socioeconomic status, occupation, mode of delivery, the place of delivery, and exclusive breastfeeding had a significant impact on the prevalence of exclusive breastfeeding. Conclusion: The study participants had good knowledge about breastfeeding however, some gaps were observed with respect to their practices. The study concluded that the importance of increasing awareness among pregnant women about breastfeeding, and even gave impetus on the necessity of family support to aid mothers in showing adherence to the breastfeeding for the recommended duration.

  1. Damstra KM, Improving breastfeeding knowledge, self-efficacy and intent through aprenatal education program, 2012, Available from [Last accessed on 2019 May 20].
  2. World Health Organization. WHO Global Targets 2025. Available from [Last accessed on 2019 May 20].
  3. UNICEF India. Nutrition – Latest stories Unicef India – 2014, 2014. Available from [Last accessed on 2019 May 12].
  4. Shwetal B, Pooja P, Neha K, Amit D, Rahul P. Knowledge, attitude and practices of postnatal mothers for early initiation of breastfeeding in obstetric ward of tertiary carehospital of adadora city. Nat J Comm Med 2012;3(2):305–309.
  5. Ministry of Health and Family Welfare. National Family Health Survey-4 2015-2016. State factsheet Tamil Nadu. Available from [Last accessed on 2019 May 13].
  6. Gajalakshmi V, Mathew A, Brennan P, Rajan B, Kanimozhi VC, Mathews A, et al. Breastfeeding and breast cancer risk in India: a multicenter case-control study. Int J Cancer 2009;125(3):662–665. DOI: 10.1002/ijc.24429.
  7. WHO, UNICEF. Global strategy for infant and young child feeding, World Health Organization, 2002. Available from health/NUTRITION/global-strategy.htm [Last accessed on 2019 May 20].
  8. Radhakrishnan S, Balamurga SS. Prevalence of exclusive breastfeeding practices among a. rural women in Tamil Nadu. Int J Health Allied Sci 2012;1(2):64–67. DOI: 10.4103/2278-344X.101667.
  9. United Nations. Millennium Development Goals. Available from [Last accessed on 2019 May 11].
  10. WHO/Exclusive breastfeeding-World Health Organization. Available from [Last accessed on 2019 May 13].
  11. National Guidelines of Infant and Young Child Feeding, 2004. Available from [Last accessed on 2019 May 19].
  12. American Academy of Paediatrics Policy Statement. Breastfeeding and use of human milk. Paediatrics 2005;115:496–506.
  13. Park K. Preventive medicine in obstetrics, paediatrics and geriatrics. In: Park K, ed. Text book of Preventive and Social Medicine, 24rd ed., Jabalpur: Banarsidas Bhanot Publishers; 2017. pp. 573–576.
  14. Kumar P, Aggarwal AK. Breastfeeding Knowledge and practices amongst mothers in rural population of North India: community based study. J Trop Pediatr 2009;55(3):183–188. DOI: 10.1093/tropej/fmn110.
  15. Patel A, Badhoniya N, Khadse S, Senarath U, Agho KE, Dibley MJ. Infant and young child feeding indicators and determinants of poor feeding practices in India: a review of National Family Health Survey data. Food Nutrition Bull 2010;31(2):314–333. DOI: 10.1177/156482651003100221.
  16. Tiwari R, Mahajan PC, Lahariya C. Determinants of exclusive breastfeeding in urban slums: a community based study. J Trop Pediatr 2009;55(1):49–54. DOI: 10.1093/tropej/fmn037.
  17. Eckhardt CL, Lutz T, Karanja N, Jobe JB, Maupome G, Ritenbaugh C. Knowledge, attitudes and beliefs that may influence infant feeding practices in American Indian Mothers. J Acad Nutr Diet 2014;114(10):1587–1593. DOI: 10.1016/j.jand.2014.04.021.
  18. Britton C, McCormick FM, Renfrew MJ. Support for breastfeeding mothers – Cochrane Database Of Systematic Reviews; 2006.
  19. Saied H, Mohamed A, Suliman A, Anazi WA. Breastfeeding knowledge, attitude and barriers among Saudi women in Riyadh. J Natural Sci Res 2013;12(3):1–11.
  20. Kishore MS, Joshi PC, Angdembe MR, Das SK, Ahmed S, Faruque AS, et al. Prevalence of exclusive breastfeeding and associated factors among mothers in rural Bangladesh: a cross-sectional study. Int Breastfeed J 2014;9:7. DOI: 10.1186/1746-4358-9-7.
  21. Vijayalakshmi P, Susheela T, Mythili D. Knowledge, attitudes, and breast feeding practices of postnatal mothers: a cross sectional survey. Int J Health Sci 2015;9(4):364–374. DOI: 10.12816/0031226.
  22. Sachdev HP, Mehrota S. Predictors of exclusive breastfeeding in early infancy. Operational implications. Ind Pediatr 1995;32(12):1287–1296.
  23. Ratan D, Mukherjee A. Knowledge, attitude and practices of infant feeding practices among rural women in eastern India. J Evolution Med Dental Sci 2014;3(2):506–512. DOI: 10.14260/jemds/2014/1857.
  24. Patro S, Nanda S, Sahu R. Infant feeding practices of Paroja: A tribal community of Orissa. Stud Home Community Sci 2012;6(1):21–25. DOI: 10.1080/09737189.2012.11885352.
  25. Harnagle R, Chawla PS. A study of knowledge, attitude and practices (kap) of lactating mothers on breast feeding, weaning immunization and dietary practices at Jabalpur cantonment, India. Int J Curr Microbiol App Sci 2013;2(11):393–403.
  26. Paudel DP, Giri S. Breast feeding practices and associated factors in Bhaktapur District of Nepal: a community based cross-sectional study among lactating mothers. J Sci Soc 2014;41(2):108–113. DOI: 10.4103/0974-5009.132851.
  27. Sathish K, Vallabh B. Prelacteal feeding practices in a rural community. Indian Med Gaz 2011; 337–341.
  28. Laroia N, Sharma D. The religious and cultural bases for breastfeeding practices among the Hindus. Breastfeed Med 2006;1(2):94–98. DOI: 10.1089/bfm.2006.1.94.
  29. Jayashree M. Lactation failure—myth or reality? J OBGY India 1999;49(4):78–82.
  30. Meshram I, Laxmaiah A, Venkaiah K, Brahmam GNV. Impact of feeding and breastfeeding practices on the nutritional status of infants in a district of Andhra Pradesh, India. Natl Med J India 2012;25(4): 201–206.
  31. Mallik S, Dasgupta U, Naskar S, Sengupta D, Choudary K, Bhattacharya SK. Knowledge of breast feeding and timely initiation of it amongst postnatal mothers: an experience from a baby friendly teaching hospitals of a metropolitan city. IOSR J Dent Med Sci 2013;4(1):25–30. DOI: 10.9790/0853-0412530.
  32. Kommula ALDS, Kommula VM. Knowledge, attitude and practices of breast feeding among mothers in a slum area of Amalapuram, East Godavari District, Andhra Pradesh. Nat J Med dental Res 2014;2(3):15–17.
  33. Dhammika BLK, Gunawardena NS. Knowledge, practices and concerns regarding exclusive breastfeeding for six months among mothers of infants in a suburban setting in Sri Lanka. Sri Lanka J Child Health 2012;41(1):9–14. DOI: 10.4038/sljch.v41i1.4130.
  34. Hiregoudar V, Hemagiri K, Goud TG. Breast feeding practices in Bellary, Karnataka: a hospital based study. J Pub Health Med Res 2013;1(2):76–80.
PDF Share
PDF Share

© Jaypee Brothers Medical Publishers (P) LTD.