November 11th, 2015
Persuading African-American women to breastfeed proves challenging
Nurses and educators are pushing to encourage breast-feeding throughout the Northeast Health District in Athens, but persuading more African-American women to do so will mean overcoming entrenched attitudes.
“In the U.S., breast-feeding rates differ by race and ethnicity. You see higher rates among Hispanic and educated, higher-income white mothers and yet significantly lower rates among African-Americans,” said Leann Birch, childhood obesity professor at the University of Georgia. “If they are working more than one job, it’s probably much harder to take some time to nurse.”
“In America, there is a mindset that only the low-income, less educated population breast-feeds. In reality, it’s the wealthy, the educated that are breast-feeding,” said Alex Anderson, an associate professor of nutrition at the University of Georgia. “But women all over the world do it. It just takes proper education.”
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