NCT response to Diet and Nutrition Survey of Infants and Young Children

Released on: 18 March 2013

On 13 March 2013, the Department of Health published the results from the Diet and Nutrition Survey of Infants and Young Children (DNSIYC) 2011.

Candy Perry, Healthcare Business Development Director of parent charity NCT said:

“In line with the Infant Feeding Survey, these results show that many women stopped breastfeeding after the first few weeks. We know that most women stop breastfeeding before they would have liked, indicating that they are still not getting all the help they need.

“Mothers who plan to breastfeed need access to skilled, non-judgemental, one-to-one support. This is why we run a helpline staffed by trained breastfeeding counsellors as well as feeding support services for local areas such as drop-ins, Baby Café and peer support training. We know that the majority of mothers attending our Baby Café drop-in centres breastfeed beyond eight weeks and that they can help to maximise breastfeeding rates.”

Rosie Dodds, Senior Policy Adviser of parent charity NCT said:

“We welcome this survey which gives us useful data to help in providing relevant information for parents.  For example the news that average salt intake in babies aged 12-18 months was higher than the recommended maximum despite most parents not adding salt to foods for babies, indicates that parents need to know which manufactured foods have too much salt to be suitable for toddlers.

“It’s disappointing to find that 32% of babies younger than six months were given follow-on milk, which is only suitable for babies older than this. The heavy advertising of follow-on milks is likely to be the main factor influencing parents. NCT believes this advertising should be stopped. 

“It’s also useful to know the proportion of women who continue to breastfeed beyond 10 months;  15% of babies were breastfed at 10-11 months and 8% continued for longer than 12 months.”