Date of Award

Summer 8-8-2017

Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Science (MS)



First Advisor

Anita Nucci

Second Advisor

Barbara Hopkins


Type 1 diabetes (T1D) is an autoimmune disease that occurs when T lymphocyte cells attack and destroy beta cells in the pancreas.1 The cause of T1D is considered to be a combination of genetic predisposition and environmental or lifestyle risk factors.

Early introduction of diet is thought to play a role in the development of T1D as it is less common in people who were breastfed and who were introduced to solid foods at later ages. The protection that breastfeeding can offer against the development of childhood obesity and T1D in children at risk for T1D is unknown and may be related to many different factors. The purpose of this project is to review the literature on the association between infant diet, including breastfeeding and complementary foods, and the development of obesity and T1D. This information will be used to prepare a secondary analysis proposal to examine the association between length of exclusive breastfeeding and obesity risk in children at risk for T1D for submission to the Presentations and Publications Committee of the Trial to Reduce IDDM in the Genetically at Risk (TRIGR) study.