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MINERVA PEDIATRICA

A Journal on Pediatrics, Neonatology, Adolescent Medicine,
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Minerva Pediatrica 2007 April;59(2):115-20

language: English

Pediatricians’ advices on timing of solid food introduction: two Italian experiences

Strambi M., Liuzzi C., Scalacci E., Macucci F.

Section of Neonatology and Preventive Pediatrics Department of Pediatrics Obstetrics and Reproductive Medicine University of Siena, Siena, Italy


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Aim. The aim of the study was to evaluate and compare methods of weaning suggested by pediatricians in two Italian regions with different geographical and cultural characteristics, Tuscany and Apulia.
Methods. Questionnaires were sent to 30 pediatricians, 15 in Tuscany and 15 in Apulia. Questions regarded prevalence and duration of breastfeeding, timing and manner of introducing other foods, and use of commercial baby food or food prepared at home.
Results. The pediatricians advised beginning weaning between the 4th and the 6th months. In Tuscany, 60% of pediatricians advised breastfeeding for 6 months and 40% for 12 months. In Apulia the same figures were 86.7% and 13.3%. All pediatricians advised differentiated introduction of foods. The percentages of Tuscany pediatricians suggesting late introduction of certain foods were 31.70% for eggs, 19.51% for cow’s milk, fish and tomato, 4.87% for vegetables and 2.44% for citrus and gluten. Foods introduced with caution by Apulia pediatricians were egg white (41.37%), gluten (31.03%) and fish (27.58%). The percentages of Tuscany and of Apulia pediatricians recommending home cooked food were 77.7% and 31.21%, respectively; 22.3% and 68.75% respectively recommended commercial baby food.
Conclusion. Pediatricians in both regions are aware of the importance of nutritional quality in the first year of life and provide indications about the timing and manner of introducing foods in line with international scientific guidelines.

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