|New and Noteworthy in Nutrition (WB)|
|No. 18, September 11, 1992|
21. Polygamy and the Contraceptive Effects of Breastfeeding. Discussion of contraceptive effects of exclusive breastfeeding in the last issue of New & Noteworthy prompted Michael Azefor, to note breastfeeding's greater effect among the polygamous. A widespread cultural taboo in much of Sub-Saharan Africa is to avoid sexual intercourse during the months the baby is supposed to be on the breast. The tradition of his tribe in Cameroon: "Don't feed (satisfy) baby and daddy at the same time." If one or the other is given up, it is less likely in polygamous families that it will be the former, he says. The extensiveness of polygamous cultures in West Africa is one reason that breastfeeding goes on longer there than, say, southern African countries.
22. Breastfeeding Promotion Revisited. From Brazil, a new evaluation of an early 1980s breastfeeding program that found that, five years after it was over, the duration of breastfeeding had still doubled (to 120 days). There was remarkable memory of specific TV clips, for instance, of on-the-screen nursing by a novella (soap opera) heroine and by the wife of a football hero.
23. Price-fixing. The ongoing battle between infant formula manufacturers and their critics, especially NGOs, reached another milestone in mid-June when the U.S. Government charged the three largest manufacturers with price fixing of formula being provided to public nutrition programs. Two of the three, American Home Products and Mead Johnson settled out of court -- the latter, for instance, agreeing to deliver 3.6 million pounds of infant formula (worth $25 million) to the government's WIC (Women, Infants and Children) program. The largest manufacturer, Abbott Laboratories, did not join the consent decree and court charges have been filed. Similar allegations have long been voiced by critics regarding international marketing of infant formula.