Women unaware of breastfeeding norms in China

August 8th, 2010 - 12:19 am ICT by IANS  

Beijing, Aug 7 (IANS) Most of women in China are not aware of the breastfeeding norms, a survey has revealed.
Only 20 percent of respondents understood what exclusive breastfeeding means while more than 50 percent of mothers stopped exclusive breastfeeding before their child was six months old, the poll said.

The poll also found that only 29 percent mothers exclusively breastfed their babies for six months, while more than half of the interviewees failed to do so, the China Daily reported Saturday.

Insufficient breast milk and having no time to continue breastfeeding after returning from work (31 percent) were cited as two major reasons mothers were unable to exclusively breastfeed for six months.

The survey of more than 1,100 people in seven cities nationwide, conducted by Beijing Horizon Research Consultancy Group for Save the Children China Programme, was released during World Breastfeeding Week from Aug 1-7.

Exclusive breastfeeding is defined as giving only breast milk without any other food or drink, including water. Nonetheless, four in five respondents believed complementary water and food like milk powder could be added during the course of feeding breast milk.

The World Health Organisation (WHO) recommends every child to receive breastfeeding for at least two years after birth.

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