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Appetite. 2002 Oct;39(2):111-7.

Effects of multivitamin-multimineral supplementation on appetite of stunted young Beninese children.

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  • 1Département de Nutrition et Sciences Alimentaires, Faculté des Sciences Agronomiques, Université Nationale du Bénin, République du Bénin, The Netherlands.


In the developing world, food intake of young children is often insufficient for growth. Reduced appetite due to several factors including micronutrient deficiencies might be an explanation. We hypothesized that a multivitamin-multimineral supplementation will improve appetite of stunted children in south of Benin. Multivitamin-multimineral supplements (VITALIA-tablets) contain 11 vitamins and 8 minerals. Stunted children (Ht/Age Z score < -2) of 17-32 months old were randomly assigned to multivitamin-multimineral (n = 48) or placebo (n = 53) group. Supplementation was daily and supervised throughout 6 weeks. Knee-heel length, length, weight, arm circumference and appetite were assessed once a week for the three weeks preceding and the three weeks following the six-week intervention period. Growth was additionally assessed 4 months after intervention. Each appetite test day, morbidity data and mother's report on child's appetite throughout the preceding day were recorded. Reported appetite, intake of test food and knee-heel length increased after supplementation in both groups (p < 0.05), but were not different between groups. Growth was similar 4 months after the intervention. Morbidity was comparable in both groups before as well as after supplementation. We conclude that 6-week multivitamin-multimineral supplementation alone failed to improve appetite and growth of stunted young children.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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