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Am J Clin Nutr. 1997 Apr;65(4):916-20.

Bioavailability in infants of iron from infant cereals: effect of dephytinization.

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Nestlé Research Center Lausanne, Switzerland.


Iron bioavailability from an infant cereal made of wheat flour with a low extraction rate (70%) and cow milk was measured in infants by using a stable-isotope technique. A dephytinized infant cereal was prepared by adding commercial phytase during manufacture, resulting in degradation of 88% of the native phytic acid. Paired comparisons were made to evaluate the effect of phytic acid on iron bioavailability. Both infant cereals contained identical amounts of ascorbic acid and had a molar ratio of ascorbic acid to iron of 2:1. Iron was added as ferrous sulfate. No difference in iron bioavailability was observed in this study; the geometric mean was 8.7% (range: 3.8-16.9%) and 8.5% (range: 3.4-21.4%) from the cereal with native phytic acid (0.08% phytic acid) and the dephytinized cereal (0.01% phytic acid), respectively. Dephytinization of infant cereals containing a relatively low native phytic acid content and high amounts of ascorbic acid is thus unnecessary to ensure adequate bioavailability of iron.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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