Effects of feeding practices on the diversity of faecal short chain Fatty acids in 1-4 months infants in Pakistani cohort
Introduction: The most important product of fermentation of non-digestible carbohydrates is short chain fatty acids. Formation of these metabolites are mainly dependent on diet and gut microbial colonization. Literature has been supportive of the fact that short chain fatty acids play significant role in chronic inflammation (allergic diseases) and host physiology and metabolic processes including obesity and diabetes. Little is known about the differences in the metabolism between breast-fed and bottle-fed infants in our country. This study was designed to determine the differences in the metabolism between breast-fed and bottle-fed infants in Pakistani cohort.
Material & Methods: A cross sectional study was carried out in 50 healthy infants. Enrollment of these children was done from different centers and localities in Peshawar. Stool samples were collected from the included infants and short chain fatty acids were studied by using Gas Chromatography.
Results: A total of 50 healthy infants (25 breast-fed and 25 bottle-fed) with mean age (mean ± sd) 78.40 35.88 days (range: 1-4 months) were included in this survey. Breast feeding was associated with lesser absolute concentrations of total short chain fatty acids. Among short chain fatty acids, acetates were more in breast feeding infants (median 651, p= 0.001) compared to formula feeding infants while propionates (median 81.06, p=0.02), butyrates (median 31.86, p=0.007) and iso-butyrates (median 3.76, p=0.003) were dominant in FFI which indicated an important role of short chain fatty acids in human health.
Conclusion: It may be concluded that feeding practices strongly influence the gut microbial metabolism and metabolites (short chain fatty acids).