Breast feeding and asthma in children in Diwanyiah
Background: the protective effect of and the association between breastfeeding and asthma has raised substantial interest and is a subject of debate.
Objectives: to study the relationship between asthma and feeding pattern in children up to the age of 12 years in Diwaniah, Iraq with a focus on breast feeding.
Patients and methods: this is a prospective study accomplished in the maternity and children teaching hospital in Diwaniah ,Iraq during the period from January 2015 to March 2016. The study involves 1242 patients with the diagnosis of asthma and control group of 1350 healthy infants and children were chosen for comparison. The pattern of feeding and the period of breast feeding in both groups were recorded together with other variables.
Results: sixty six percent( 688 out of 1041) of patients with asthma ≤ 5 years were artificially fed and only 13.5% of them were breast fed. the rate of asthma is significantly less in children with breast feeding especially when the age interval under five years is taken into consideration.
Conclusion: early, exclusive and prolonged breastfeeding protects against asthma in children particularly in those less than 5 years of age.