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Am J Clin Nutr. 2000 Feb;71(2):507-13.

Vitamin A supplementation selectively improves the linear growth of indonesian preschool children: results from a randomized controlled trial.

Author information

1
Division of Human Nutrition, the Department of Public Health, the Faculty of Medicine, the University of Gadjah Mada, Yogyakarta, Indonesia. gizi@yogya.wasantara.net.id

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Vitamin A deficiency is associated with stunting and wasting in preschool children, but vitamin A supplementation trials have not shown a consistent effect on growth.

OBJECTIVE:

We examined the effect of vitamin A supplementation on height and weight increments among Indonesian preschool children.

DESIGN:

Data were obtained from a randomized, double-masked, placebo-controlled trial of rural Javanese children aged 6-48 mo. Children received 206000 IU vitamin A (103000 IU if aged <12 mo) or placebo every 4 mo.

RESULTS:

High-dose vitamin A supplementation modestly improved the linear growth of the children by 0.16 cm/4 mo. The effect was modified by age, initial vitamin A status, and breast-feeding status. Vitamin A supplementation improved height by 0.10 cm/4 mo in children aged <24 mo and by 0.22 cm/4 mo in children aged >/=24 mo. The vitamin A-supplemented children with an initial serum retinol concentration <0.35 micromol/L gained 0.39 cm/4 mo more in height and 152 g/4 mo more in weight than did the placebo group. No growth response to vitamin A was found among children with an initial serum retinol concentration >/=0.35 micromol/L. In non-breast-fed children, vitamin A supplementation improved height by 0.21 cm/4 mo regardless of age. In breast-fed children, vitamin A supplementation improved linear growth by approximately 0.21 cm/4 mo among children aged >/=24 mo, but had no significant effect on the growth of children aged <24 mo.

CONCLUSION:

High-dose vitamin A supplementation improves the linear growth of children with very low serum retinol and the effect is modified by age and breast-feeding.

PMID:
10648265
DOI:
10.1093/ajcn/71.2.507
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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