Objective: This meta-analysis was conducted to examine the association between breastfeeding and undernutrition among children under 5 years of age in developing countries. Study design: Systematic review and meta-analysis. Methods: A comprehensive literature search was conducted of datasets from Embase, CINHAL, PubMed, Cochrane Library, and Indonesian databases to include eligible studies. Comprehensive Meta-Analysis 3.0 statistical software was used to perform data entry and data analysis. Odds ratios (ORs) with 95% confidence intervals (CIs) were extracted from each study or were calculated based on the reported number of cases and controls in each study. Random-effects models or fixed-effects models were used to demonstrate overall risk estimates. A moderator analysis was conducted to examine possible moderators explaining the heterogeneity across studies. Findings: In total, 33 studies were included which examined the association of breastfeeding with undernutrition. A random-effects model showed that breastfeeding had inverse correlations with overall undernutrition (OR = 0.82, 95% CI = 0.68, 0.99) and the stunting type of undernutrition (OR = 0.73, 95% CI = 0.55, 0.95). A moderator analysis showed that studies which included exclusive breastfeeding and unclear birth weights had low risks of overall undernutrition (p < 0.05). Moreover, studies which included exclusive breastfeeding and adopted a case–control study design exhibited a low risk of the stunting type of undernutrition (p < 0.05). Conclusions: Providing breastfeeding or exclusive breastfeeding can benefit children under 5 years of age in developing countries reduce overall undernutrition and the stunting type of undernutrition. Clinical relevance: Healthcare professionals should develop and implement suitable strategies to increase awareness regarding the importance of breastfeeding and enhance breastfeeding and exclusive breastfeeding adherence.
|Journal||Journal of Nursing Scholarship|
|Publication status||Accepted/In press - 2022|
- exclusive breastfeeding
ASJC Scopus subject areas