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Body Image, Maternal-Fetal Attachment, and Choice of Infant Feeding Method: A Study in Taiwan


  • Hui-Chi Huang is Lecturer at the Chang Gung Institute of Technology, Taoyuan; Shing-Yaw Wang is Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung; and Chung-Hey Chen is Professor in the College of Nursing, Kaohsiung Medical University, Kaohsiung, Taiwan.

Chung-Hey Chen, Professor, College of Nursing, Kaohsiung Medical University, No. 100, Shih Chuan 1st Rd., Kaohsiung, Taiwan.


Abstract: Background: Many factors contribute to a pregnant woman's choice of infant feeding method, yet few studies have investigated which factors might be specific to pregnant women in Taiwan. The purpose of this study was to explore the relationships among factors of body image, maternal-fetal attachment, and the choices made by pregnant Taiwanese women about infant feeding method. Methods: One hundred and ninety-five pregnant women were recruited during their third trimester at five hospitals in Kaohsiung, Taiwan. Participants completed three questionnaires, including a demographic data form, an attitude to body image scale, and a modified maternal-fetal attachment scale. Results: The results of stepwise logistic regression indicated that the best subset for predicting the criterion variable of breastfeeding intention included higher level of education, primiparity, and a higher level of maternal-fetal attachment. Conclusions: Maternal-fetal attachment, education, and parity are predictive of intended infant feeding method by pregnant women who choose breastfeeding, thereby adding to existing knowledge of the factors involved in feeding method choices of Taiwanese women. Further research should incorporate maternal-fetal attachment into a supportive model of breastfeeding.