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Table 2 Characteristics of included studies and main results

From: Baby-led weaning: what a systematic review of the literature adds on

Reference Type of study Type of data collection Number of subjects Age of infants Method of weaningconsidered Definition of baby-led weaning Intervention Outcomes considered
Brown and Lee, 2011 [30] Observational (comparative cross-sectional) Online questionnaire (self- reported) N = 655 mothers 6–12 months BLW vs traditional spoon-feeding BLW = 10% or less of puréed foods and spoon-feeding (self-reported) / Demographic background of mothers, timing and type of weaning, experiences of introducing solid foods to infants.
Brown and Lee, 2011 [11] Observational (comparative cross-sectional) Child Feeding Questionnaire (self-reported) N = 702 mothers 6–12 months BLW vs traditional spoon-feeding BLW = using both spoon feeding and purées 10% or less (self-reported) / Weaning approach, Information regarding infant weight, perceived size and mothers’ level of control.
Townsend and Pitchford, 2012 [24] Observational (comparative cross-sectional on current and retrospective data) Self-completed questionnaire N = 155 parents 20–78 months baby-led weaning vs traditional spoon feeding Self-reported weaning style / Impact of the weaning methods on food preferences and health-related outcomes (BMI)
Cameron et al., 2013 [25] Observational (comparative cross-sectional) Online survey N = 199 mothers 6–7 months BLW vs traditional spoon-feeding adherent BLW = infant mostly or entirely self-feeding; self-identified BLW = mothers reporting following BLW but using at least 50% spoon-feeding;parent-led feeding= > 50% spoon-feeding / Comparison between the different feeding practices and selected health-related behaviours (timing and type of complementary food, mealtimes, choking, demographic information)
Moore et al., 2014 [38] Observational (comparative cross-sectional) Parental online questionnaire N = 3207 parents 17–26 weeks All Self-defined / Factors associated with timing of weaning
Brown and Lee, 2013 [12] Observational (comparative cross-sectional) self-report questionnaire N = 298 mothers 18–24 months BLW vs traditional approach BLW = 10% or less of puréed foods and spoon-feeding / Maternal demographic information, child eating style (satiety-responsiveness, food-responsiveness, fussiness, enjoyment of food) and reported child weight and BMI.
Brown, 2016 [40] Observational (comparative cross-sectional) Maternal self-reported questionnaire, including Dutch Eating Behaviour Questionnaire, Brief Symptom Inventory and Ten Item Personality Questionnaire N = 604 mothers 6–12 months BLW vs traditional approach BLW = 10% or less of puréed foods and spoon-feeding / Maternal characteristics and demographic background, weaning style, maternal personality and eating behavior
Brown, 2017 [26] Observational (comparative cross-sectional) Maternal self-reported questionnaire N = 1151 mothers 4–12 months BLW (strict or loose) vs traditional approach Self-reported strict or loose BLW or traditional approach; estimated frequency of spoon-feeding (0, 10, 50, 75, 90, 100%) / Comparison of number of choking episodes, type of foods offered- > No significant differences in choking episodes between groups
Cameron et al., 2015 [29] Observational (comparative cross-sectional) weekly interview for 12 weeks and three-day weighed record or iron questionnaires N = 23 infants(14 BLISS, 9 BLW) 6 months (followed until 9 months) BLW and BLISS (Baby-Led Introduction to SolidS) Self-defined BLW or BLISS approach BLW group: no intervention (no feeding protocol to follow). BLISS group: 2 visits and support about the characteristics of BLISS approach. Comparison of high energy foods, iron containing foods, high choking risk foods offered. - > the BLISS group was more likely to introduce iron containing foods and less likely to be offered high-choking-risk foods
Morison et al., 2016 [31] Observational (comparative cross-sectional) Parental feeding questionnaire and weighed diet record N = 51 infants (25 BLW, 26 traditional spoon-feeding TSF) 6–8 months Baby-led vs traditional spoon-feeding Self-defined BLW or traditional approach / Comparison of food, nutrient and family meal intakes.- > BLW and TSF infants had similar energy intakes; BLW had higher intakes of fat and saturated fat, and lower intakes of iron, zinc and vitamin B12. Many in of both groups were offered high choking risk foods.
Fangupo et al., 2016 [27] RCT Maternal report in 5 questionnaires, 2 daily calendars and 2 weighed diet records N = 206 healthy women in late pregnancy Newborn (followed until 12 months) BLISS vs traditional spoon-feeding Randomisation to either BLISS or control Control group: free well child health care, conventional complementary feeding methods. BLISS group: 8 additional parent contacts for education and support regarding the BLISS approach to complementary feeding. Comparison of choking and gagging- no significant group differences in n° of choking events at any time (BLISS infants gagged more frequently at 6 months but less frequently at 8 months than controls)- 35% of infants choked at least once between 6 and 8 months of age - > a large n° of children in both groups was offered foods that pose a choking risk
Taylor et al., 2017 [32] RCT Questionnaires and 3-day weighed diet records N = 206 healthy women in late pregnancy(105 BLISS, 101control) At 24 months, N = 166 Newborn (followed until 24 months) BLISS vs traditional spoon-feeding Randomisation to either BLISS or control Control group: free well child health care, conventional complementary feeding methods. BLISS group: 8 additional parent contacts for education and support regarding the BLISS approach to complementary feeding. Primary outcome: BMI z-score at 12 and 24 months. Secondary outcomes: -energy self-regulation and eating behaviors at 6,12,24 months-energy intake at 7,12, 24 months - ≥ mean BMI z-score was not significantly different at 12 months or at 24 months- > in BLISS infants, less food fussiness and greater enjoyment of food reported at 12 months; lower satiety responsiveness at 24 months. - > no significant differences in energy intake at any point