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Responsive Feeding Recommendations: Harmonizing Integration into Dietary Guidelines for Infants and Young Children.

  • Author(s): Pérez-Escamilla, Rafael
  • Jimenez, Elizabeth Yakes
  • Dewey, Kathryn G
  • et al.

Responsive feeding (RF) involves reciprocal nurturing feeding practices between the caregiver and the child that encourage the child to develop preferences for healthy foods and beverages and to eat autonomously. In this commentary, we summarize RF-related findings from a recent US National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine (National Academies) consensus study report examining consistency in infant and young child feeding (IYCF) recommendations in guidelines from high-income countries, and we discuss implications for future IYCF guidelines. Although existing guidelines included generally consistent messages about several RF behaviors, such as the importance of encouraging self-feeding and self-regulation in infants and toddlers, they generally did not present the recommendations as part of a cohesive RF interdisciplinary framework. Moving forward, evidence-based RF recommendations should be routinely incorporated and identified in dietary guidance for IYCF based on a consensus definition of RF grounded in sound responsive parenting and feeding frameworks. We recommend replicating the National Academies' scoping review in low- and middle- income countries and mixed-methods implementation science research to improve our understanding of how best to disseminate and implement RF-related recommendations across settings (e.g., home and early care and education centers), taking the social determinants of health into account.

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