The Australian feeding infants and toddlers study
Project Status: In progress
Project administered by: SAHMRI

Receiving good nutrition during the first two years of life prevents a number of diseases throughout the lifespan. Poor nutrition can lead to growth failure as well as increased rates of obesity and diabetes and cardiovascular disease later in life.

Unfortunately, nutrition surveys in Australia have excluded children under two years. To account for this shortcoming, we are conducting a national nutritional survey of children under two years so we can get a better understanding of their feeding practices including breastfeeding during this critical period.

This project aims to collect information on infant feeding practices, introduction to solid foods, knowledge attitudes and perceptions around infant and young child feeding.

Just over 1000 caregivers of children under two years are being recruited by an internet recruiting service. Parents who are interested will be invited to sign up for the study. The study consists of two phases - an interviewer-administered phone questionnaire and a 24-hour recall of their child’s food intake.

For the 24-hour recall, parents will be mailed a package describing how to do the recall. After the parents have recorded the information a dietitian will call them and enter the information into diet analysis software.

child cooking

Why are we interested in what babies eat and drink?

The first two years of a baby’s life set the foundation for dietary patterns later in life. Previous national nutrition surveys did not include children under two years, therefore information on their diets is limited.

In this study, we would like to find out what children under two years of age are eating and drinking. Our study also aims to find out how today’s diets and feeding practices compare to Australian dietary guidelines.

With this information, we will provide better nutrition information to parents and caregivers about nutrition in the early years.

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This project is funded by the Nestle Nutrition Institute