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PLoS One. 2018 Jan 29;13(1):e0191887. doi: 10.1371/journal.pone.0191887. eCollection 2018.

Vitamin A status in healthy women eating traditionally prepared spirulina (Dihé) in the Chad Lake area.

Author information

1
Institut National Supérieur des Sciences et Techniques d'Abéché (INSTA-Tchad), Abéché, Tchad.
2
Institut de Recherche en Élevage pour le Développement (IRED), N'Djamena, Tchad.
3
Biochimie et Biologie Moléculaire, CHU, Clermont-Ferrand, France.
4
Hôpital de la mère et de l'Enfant, Ndjaména, Tchad.
5
Faculté des Sciences de l'Université de Ngaoundéré, Ngaoundéré, Cameroun.
6
Faculté de Médecine, Université de Ndjaména, Ndjaména, Tchad.
7
Unité Biostatistiques, DRCI, CHU, Clermont-Ferrand, France.
8
Académie Nationale de Médecine, Paris, France.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Chad Lake is a central place in a region with a high prevalence of vitamin A deficiency. Spirulina, a natural source of β-carotene, is traditionally produced and eaten as "Dihé" around Chad Lake. β-carotene spirulina has been found to have a high conversion factor to retinol. The aim of the study was to assess if the retinol status between healthy women eating spirulina Dihé daily (SPI+) and not (SPI-) in the Chad Lake area was different.

METHODS:

This study was observational: 88 healthy women were recruited and selected according to clinical criteria and their willingness to participate. They were divided in two groups according to their Dihé daily consumption: those who eat Dihé (SPI+; n = 35) and those who do not (SPI-; n = 35). After anthropometric and dietary assessments, blood retinol, β-carotene, retinol binding, and inflammatory/nutritional proteins were measured.

RESULTS:

The diet between groups was identical, except for β-carotene consumption, which was higher in SPI+ than in SPI- (10.8 vs. 1.8 mg/day). The serum retinol and β-carotene concentrations were significantly higher in SPI+ than in SPI- at 1.26 ± 0.36 μmol/l versus 1.03 ± 0.31 μmol/l (p = 0.008) and 0.59 ±0.37 μmol/l versus 0.46± 0.31 μmol/l (p = 0.04), respectively. Seventy-seven percent of SPI+ versus 29% of SPI- had an adequate blood retinol value (p = 0.01).

CONCLUSION:

The results confirm that β-carotene in spirulina is an effective positive modulator of blood retinol status. Dihé is a potential natural source of β-carotene to achieve a proper vitamin A status in healthy women living near Chad Lake.

PMID:
29377934
PMCID:
PMC5788361
DOI:
10.1371/journal.pone.0191887
[Indexed for MEDLINE]
Free PMC Article

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