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Open AccessArticle

Breastfeeding Duration and Residential Isolation amid Aboriginal Children in Western Australia

Centre for Population Health Research, Curtin University, Perth, WA 6845, Australia
Telethon Institute for Child Health Research, Centre for Child Health Research, University of Western Australia, P.O. Box 855, Perth, WA 6009, Australia
Faculty of Medicine, Dentistry and Health Sciences, University of Western Australia, Perth, WA 6009, Australia
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2012, 4(12), 2020-2034;
Received: 1 September 2012 / Revised: 4 December 2012 / Accepted: 5 December 2012 / Published: 13 December 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Infant Nutrition)
PDF [220 KB, uploaded 13 December 2012]


Objectives: To examine factors that impact on breastfeeding duration among Western Australian Aboriginal children. We hypothesised that Aboriginal children living in remote locations in Western Australia were breastfed for longer than those living in metropolitan locations. Methods: A population-based cross-sectional survey was conducted from 2000 to 2002 in urban, rural and remote settings across Western Australia. Cross-tabulations and multivariate logistic regression analyses were performed, using survey weights to produce unbiased estimates for the population of Aboriginal children. Data on demographic, maternal and infant characteristics were collected from 3932 Aboriginal birth mothers about their children aged 0–17 years (representing 22,100 Aboriginal children in Western Australia). Results: 71% of Aboriginal children were breastfed for three months or more. Accounting for other factors, there was a strong gradient for breastfeeding duration by remoteness, with Aboriginal children living in areas of moderate isolation being 3.2 times more likely to be breastfed for three months or more (p < 0.001) compared to children in metropolitan Perth. Those in areas of extreme isolation were 8.6 times more likely to be breastfed for three months or longer (p < 0.001). Conclusions: Greater residential isolation a protective factor linked to longer breastfeeding duration for Aboriginal children in our West Australian cohort. View Full-Text
Keywords: breastfeeding duration; Australian Aboriginal children; isolation breastfeeding duration; Australian Aboriginal children; isolation

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License (CC BY 3.0).

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Cromie, E.A.S.; Shepherd, C.C.J.; Zubrick, S.R.; Oddy, W.H. Breastfeeding Duration and Residential Isolation amid Aboriginal Children in Western Australia. Nutrients 2012, 4, 2020-2034.

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