Canadian Aboriginal infants experience poor health compared with other Canadian infants. Breastfeeding protects against many infant infections that Canadian Aboriginals disproportionately experience. The objective of our research was to estimate the proportion of select infant infection and mortality outcomes that could be prevented if all Canadian Aboriginal infants were breastfed.
Between 5.1% and 10.6% of otitis media, 24.3% and 41.4% of gastrointestinal infection, 13.8% and 26.1% of hospitalizations from lower respiratory tract infections, and 12.9% and 24.6% of sudden infant death could be prevented in Aboriginal infants if they received any breastfeeding.
Interventions that promote, protect and support breastfeeding may prevent a substantial proportion of infection and mortality in Canadian Aboriginal infants.