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What are the current feeding practices of infants and toddlers?

Examining infant and toddler feeding practices

Poor nutrition can have a detrimental effect on a woman’s pregnancy, as well as on the subsequent physical and cognitive development of her infant. In 1974, the federal Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children program, popularly known as WIC, was established to remedy nutritional deficiencies often experienced by low-income women, infants, and children (up to age 5) through the provision of food assistance, nutrition education, and referrals to health services.

Since the first U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Food and Nutrition Service (FNS) WIC Infant Feeding Practices Study (IFPS-1) 20 years ago, WIC program recommendations for infant feeding practices have changed markedly, particularly with revisions introduced in 2009 to WIC food packages, as well as adoption of a stronger emphasis on nutrition education and breastfeeding.

The overall purpose of the current (i.e., second) WIC Infant and Toddler Feeding Practices Study (ITFPS-2) is to conduct a nationally representative, longitudinal study of contemporary WIC infant, toddler, and early childhood feeding practices.

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