in nutritional guidelines for pēpi - study
Māori dietitian and Māori health researcher Hannah Rapata says she decided to pursue this as her masters research because she is aware of the inequities Māori face across every stage of life and the importance that early life nutrition has for long term health outcomes.
Rapata says many Māori parents see infant feeding as a natural and instinctive process led by their pēpi, rather than a process that is strict and in line with guidelines.
"Many of the parents we interviewed say they felt more safer and supported when going with their instinct and following their pēpi's cues, rather than listening to the advice or information from health professionals because that advice and information didn't take into account the lived experiences and cultural experiences of Māori," Rapata said.
There are guidelines provided by Plunket around what to feed pēpi, when to feed pēpi, and some advice around different types of foods.