Food taboo and food preference among the rural and urban lactating mothers of Paschim Medinipur district of West Bengal

Authors

  • Shreyosi Mitra Department of Anthropology, Vivekananda College for Women, Kolkata, West Bengal, India

DOI:

https://doi.org/10.18203/2394-6040.ijcmph20240270

Keywords:

Food taboo, Lactation, Caste, Tribe

Abstract

Background: Food taboo is a prohibition against consuming certain foods and food preference refers to the way in which people choose from among available comestibles on the basis of biological or economic perceptions including taste, value, purity, ease or difficulty of preparation, and the availability of fuel and other preparation tools.  This cultural practice can be studied from different theoretical perspectives.

Methods: For the present study total number of 948 [Hindu rural caste (347), Hindu urban caste (356), Lodha (245) rural areas] lactating mothers were chosen for collecting data regarding their socio-demographic features and the cultural practices (food taboo and food preferences during the period of lactation) followed by them. Both interview and case study method was applied for collecting data. SPSS 16.0 was used to entry and analyse the data.

Results: Reveals that hindu caste rural participants showed significantly higher preference for certain food items compared to their urban counterpart and the Lodha participants. Significantly, more number of HCR participants showed preference towards certain food items during lactation to improve the quality of breast milk. Result also shows that there were significant differences across hindu caste rural than their urban counterpart and the Lodha participants with respect to all the variables related to food taboo.

Conclusions: Cultural practices have influenced the health behaviour like breastfeeding practices of the lactating mothers.

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Published

2024-01-31

How to Cite

Mitra, S. (2024). Food taboo and food preference among the rural and urban lactating mothers of Paschim Medinipur district of West Bengal. International Journal Of Community Medicine And Public Health, 11(2), 807–814. https://doi.org/10.18203/2394-6040.ijcmph20240270

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Original Research Articles