Timing of complementary feeding in preterm infants (SPOON studie) (WC2015-007 HZ)


Starting date: 01/02/2016

Limited evidence is available about the optimal age of the start of complementary feeding in preterm infants and implications for both short and long term health. Complementary feeding is defined as the introduction of non-(breast) milk foods or nutritive liquids when milk alone is no longer sufficient to meet all nutritional requirements. In this period, there is a gradual transition to eating family foods. Timely introduction of complementary feeding during infancy is necessary for both nutritional and developmental reasons. Complementary feeding is associated with major changes in both macronutrient and micronutrient intake. Early complementary feeding in term infants is suggested to be a risk factor for childhood obesity. Childhood obesity is associated with major health risks. There is evidence that overweight youth are at increased risk of remaining overweight.  Yet, for preterm infants information is lacking and term infants can not always be compared with preterm infants directly. To determe the correlations between the start of complementary feeding and obesity, it is important to perform this study.