Effects of Early Parent Training on Mother-Infant Feeding Interactions

Inbal Globus, Yael Latzer, Oded Pshetatzki, Carmit Shani Levi, Ron Shaoul, Iris Elad, Geila S. Rozen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Objective: This study examined whether professional behavioral and nutritional training for first-time mothers can improve feeding interaction at age 12 months. Methods: Participants were 128 mother-infant dyads: 86 in the intervention group and 42 in the control group. The mean mothers' age was 30 years (±2.6). The intervention group received Mother-Infant Feeding Interaction (MI-FI) training: 4 weekly workshops for mothers when infants were aged 4 to 6 months old, followed by internet-based support by a dietitian and social worker until infants reached age 12 months. The control group received municipal well-baby clinic's standard mother-infant support. We assessed the mothers' tolerance to ambiguity and feeding-related reports. Blinded coders evaluated videotaped home mealtime interactions (age 12 months) using the Chatoor Feeding Scale (CFS). Results: Significant intergroup differences emerged in mealtime interactions for 4 of the 5 CFS dimensions: dyadic conflict (MI-FI = 4.69 vs control = 8.38), talk and distraction (3.75 vs 4.90), struggle for control (2.30 vs 4.88), and maternal noncontingency (1.61 vs 2.75). Findings indicated significantly more positive mother-infant mealtime interactions and maternal responses to infant cues in the MI-FI group than in the control group. Conclusion: Very early maternal training may support the development of more positive mother-infant feeding interactions. This may contribute to preserved internal hunger and satiety cues and improved eating habits.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)131-138
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics
Issue number2
StatePublished - 1 Feb 2019

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
Copyright © 2018 Wolters Kluwer Health, Inc. All rights reserved.


  • childhood obesity
  • early parent-child relationship
  • eating problems
  • hunger-satiety cues
  • infants

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Psychiatry and Mental health
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology
  • Pediatrics, Perinatology, and Child Health


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