What Predicts Breastfeeding Intention in Mexican-American and Non-Hispanic White Women? Evidence from a National Survey

Authors

  • Hector Balcazar MS, PhD,

    Corresponding author
    1. Hector Balcazur and Catherine Trier are at the Department of Family Resources and Human Development, and Jose Cohas is at the Department of Sociology, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona.
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  • Catherine M. Trier MS,

    1. Hector Balcazur and Catherine Trier are at the Department of Family Resources and Human Development, and Jose Cohas is at the Department of Sociology, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona.
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  • Jose A. Cobas PhD

    1. Hector Balcazur and Catherine Trier are at the Department of Family Resources and Human Development, and Jose Cohas is at the Department of Sociology, Arizona State University, Tempe, Arizona.
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Address correspondence to Hector Balcazar, MS, PhD, Associate Professor, Community Nutrition and Public Health, Department of Family Resources and Human Development, Arizona State University, Tempe, AZ 85287–2502.

Abstract

ABSTRACT: We examined the ejsects of a series of predictors on the prepartum intention to breasveed in both Mexican-American and non-Hispanic white women. A national sample included 430 Mexican-American women and 3659 non-Hispanic white women who had a pregnancy in 1988. Prenatal behavioral, sociodemographic, and biomedical information wus obtained through the 1988 National Maternal and Infant Health Survey. Two dependent variables were constructed to identify significant predictors of breastfeeding intention: exclusive versus partial and bottlefeeding, and exclusive and partial versus bottlefeeding. Results from the multiple logistic regression models indicated that advice to breastfeed at prenatal care was the strongest predictor of intentions in both Mexican-American (OR = 2.15, OR = 1.86) and non-Hispanic white mothers (OR = 2.29, OR = 3.61). In Mexican-Americans the fatherS being Hispanic was negatively associated with breastfeeding intention (OR = 0.63). In non-Hispanic whites the advice to formula feed at the Women, Infants, and Children's nutrition program was a significant negative predictor of breastfeeding intention (OR = 0.33, for exclusive and partial breastfeeding vs exclusive bottle-feeding). These results have important implications for public health policy and practice.

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