246996 Age of onset of hypertension and diabetes as an adult could be influenced by history of breastfeeding as an infant

Monday, October 31, 2011: 12:50 PM

Sarah Buxbaum, PhD , Jackson Heart Study, Jackson State University, Jackson, MS
Lynette Ekunwe, MS, MPH , School of Health Sciences, Jackson State University, Jackson, MS
Machelle Wilchesky, PhD , Centre for Clinical Epidemiology, Lady Davis Research Institute - Jewish General Hospital, Montreal, QC, Canada
Donna Antoine-LaVigne, PhD, MPH, MSEd , Jackson Heart Study, Jackson, MS
Evelyn Walker, MD, MPH , NHLBI Field Site, Jackson Heart Study, Jackson, MS
Introduction Short-term health advantages associated with breastfeeding are both widely reported and readily accepted as scientifically credible, but evidence in support of breastfeeding's associations with long term health is limited. This study in a large African American cohort from Jackson, MS (N=5301) seeks to add to the body of evidence identifying specific cardiovascular disease-related risk factors' associations with breastfeeding history, e.g., HTN, Type 2 DM. Methods 62.5% (N=3371) of the participants, responded to the question “were you breastfed?” and 42.5% (N=2297) answered “how long were you breastfed?” Type 2 DM and HTN, and age of onset, were based on self-report and medication use. Survival analysis of age of onset of Type 2 DM and HTN was done to assess differences between BF+ and BF- participants. Results Age stratified data shows that breastfeeding prevalence increased with age and was less prevalent among those whose childhood environment reflected higher SES. BF- participants had earlier age of onset. Kaplan-Meier curves also showed evidence of a later onset of both Type 2 DM and HTN when any breastfeeding had occurred in infancy, with greatest significance between ages 35-60, p<0.0001. Conclusion The later age of onset of BF+ participants suggests that early childhood nutrition such as breastfeeding may confer long term health benefits. While recognizing this observational study's limitations of retrospective recall, cohort effect due to varied ages, and cross-sectional design, the findings suggest a possible inverse association of having been breastfed in infancy with adult onset of Type 2 DM and adult onset of HTN.

Learning Areas:
Advocacy for health and health education
Chronic disease management and prevention
Public health biology
Public health or related research

Learning Objectives:
Discuss the impact of breastfeeding as an infant on hypertension and diabetes in mid-life.

Keywords: Breastfeeding, Hypertension

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: I analyzed the Jackson Heart Study data and wrote the abstract.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.