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29.10.2015 | ORIGINAL PAPER | Ausgabe 1/2017

Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health 1/2017

Exploring Barriers to Breastfeeding Among Chinese Mothers Living in Madrid, Spain

Zeitschrift:
Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health > Ausgabe 1/2017
Autoren:
Juan L. González-Pascual, Montserrat Ruiz-López, Elena M. Saiz-Navarro, Manuel Moreno-Preciado

Abstract

In Spain, immigrant women have high rates for initiating breastfeeding. In contrast, the case of immigrant Chinese mothers stands out, due to the low rate. In China, breastfeeding has historically been the cultural norm. An ethnographic study was conducted to explore aspects related to the low rate of breastfeeding. Field observations and informal interviews were conducted in two hospitals and a primary care center. Semi-structured interviews were performed with Chinese mothers and health workers. Among Spanish health workers, there is a belief that Chinese women do not breastfeed due to cultural reasons. The rapid return to work and the popular phenomenon of sending babies back to China for grandparents to raise constitute barriers for breastfeeding. Although in China breastfeeding is common practice, in Madrid the prioritization of productivity over reproduction and the existence of the so-called “satellite babies” and transnational maternity make the establishment and maintenance of breastfeeding difficult.

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