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Title: A longitudinal study investigating the role of breastfeeding, positive maternal interactions and cortisol metabolism in eating behaviours and weight gain in infancy
Author: Rogers, Samantha Louise
ISNI:       0000 0004 5362 3498
Awarding Body: University of Birmingham
Current Institution: University of Birmingham
Date of Award: 2014
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A novel longitudinal study was conducted to investigate the roles of breastfeeding, positive maternal mealtime interactions and cortisol metabolism on weight gain and the development of eating behaviours during infancy, whilst controlling for covariates. Mothers and their new-born infants were recruited on maternity units and contacted five times over the first year. Mothers and infants were weighed and measured, feeding information recorded and urine samples collected for the analysis of cortisol metabolism. Mothers who breastfed for longer durations interacted more positively with their infants and had infants who were activating and clearing more cortisol at 12-months and gained weight more slowly throughout infancy. Mothers observed to interact more positively had infants who were metabolising more cortisol at 12-months, suggesting that maternal behaviour is involved in infant cortisol metabolism and may have a programming effect on their infant’s developing HPA axis. This thesis has provided the first set of normative data on the development of cortisol metabolism throughout infancy and has provided the first evidence that infant cortisol metabolism is an independent and significant predictor of eating behaviours and weight gain in the first year of life, even after accounting for breastfeeding duration and maternal interactions during feeding.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral
EThOS ID:  DOI: Not available
Keywords: BF Psychology ; HQ The family. Marriage. Woman