Breastfeeding in infancy is not associated with inflammatory status in healthy adolescents

Caroline M.P. Vérier, Alain Duhamel, Laurent Béghin, Ligia Esperanza Diaz, Julia Warnberg, Ascensión Marcos, Sonia Gómez-Martínez, Yannis Manios, Stefaan De Henauw, Michael Sjöström, Luis A. Moreno, Mathilde Kersting, Christina Breidenassel, Dènes Molnar, Enrique G. Artero, Marika Ferrari, Kurt Widhalm, Dominique Turck, Frédéric Gottrand

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It has been suggested that breast-feeding (BF) may be associated with a decreased risk of cardiovascular disease in adulthood. A low-grade inflammation is associated with an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, even in apparently healthy children. The objective of this studywas to assess the potentialmodulating effect of BF on the inflammatory status of healthy adolescents. Information on BF (duration)was obtained from parental records in 484 of 1040 healthy European urban adolescents (56.4% females) that had a blood sample obtained as part of the Healthy Lifestyle in Europe by Nutrition and Adolescence study. Blood serum inflammatory markers were measured, including high sensitivity C-reactive protein, complement factors 3 and 4, ceruloplasmin, adhesion molecules (L-selectin and soluble endothelial selectin, soluble vascular cell adhesion molecule 1, and intercellular adhesion molecule 1), cytokines, TGFβ1, and white blood cells. After univariate analysis, a propensity score, including the potential confounding factors, was computed and used to assess the association between BF and selected inflammatory markers. BF was not significantly associated with any of the selected inflammatory markers after adjustment for gender and propensity score. In our study, BF was not associated with low-grade inflammatory status in healthy adolescents, suggesting that the potential cardiovascular benefits of BF are related to other mechanisms than modulation of inflammation ormight become relevant at a later age. Groups at high risk for cardiovascular disease should be a target for further research concerning the effects of BF.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)411-417
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Mar 1 2011


ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics

Cite this

Vérier, C. M. P., Duhamel, A., Béghin, L., Diaz, L. E., Warnberg, J., Marcos, A., Gómez-Martínez, S., Manios, Y., De Henauw, S., Sjöström, M., Moreno, L. A., Kersting, M., Breidenassel, C., Molnar, D., Artero, E. G., Ferrari, M., Widhalm, K., Turck, D., & Gottrand, F. (2011). Breastfeeding in infancy is not associated with inflammatory status in healthy adolescents. Journal of Nutrition, 141(3), 411-417.