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Int J Vitam Nutr Res. 2008 Mar;78(2):74-86. doi: 10.1024/0300-9831.78.2.74.

Efficacy of iron-fortified rice in reducing anemia among schoolchildren in the Philippines.

Author information

1
From the Food and Nutrition Research Institute, Department of Science and Technology (IAA and MVC), Philippines. imelda_agdeppa@yahoo.com

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Iron deficiency anemia (IDA) in the Philippines is a serious public health problem. Fortifying rice offers a great opportunity to control IDA. However, information on other types of fortificants that can be used is scarce.

OBJECTIVE:

To compare the effects of two types of iron fortificants in rice in improving the hematological status of schoolchildren.

DESIGN:

180 randomly selected 6-to 9-year-old anemic children were randomly allocated to three groups in a double-blinded manner: One group received iron-enriched rice (IER) with extruded iron premix rice (IPR) using ferrous sulfate as fortificant (ExFeSO4); the second group received IER with extruded IPR using micronized dispersible ferric pyrophosphate (ExFeP80); and the third group received non-fortified rice (Control). These were administered daily for 5 days a week for 6 months. Blood samples were collected at baseline after 3 and 6 months.

RESULTS:

At baseline, one child in the ExFeP80 group was suffering from IDA; at 3 months, no IDA was found in any groups; while at 6 months, one child in the ExFeP80 developed IDA. The baseline prevalence of anemia in all groups, which was 100%, was significantly reduced to 51%, 54%, and 63% in the ExFeSO4, ExFeP80 and Control groups respectively. After 6 months, further significant reductions were observed in the ExFeSO4 (38%) and ExFeP80 (33%) but remained at 63% in the Control group. Greater, significant increases were also observed in plasma ferritin in the fortified groups than in the Control group from baseline to 6 months. The predictors of change in hemoglobin (Hb) and plasma ferritin were group allocation and basal values.

CONCLUSION:

The consumption of rice fortified with FeP80 using extrusion technology has similar effects as that of FeSO4 in reducing the prevalence of IDA among schoolchildren.

PMID:
18791976
DOI:
10.1024/0300-9831.78.2.74
[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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