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Br J Nutr. 1998 Aug;80(2):177-82.

Effect of dietary phytic acid on zinc absorption in the healthy elderly, as assessed by serum concentration curve tests.

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Nestlé Research Centre-NESTEC Ltd., Lausanne, Switzerland.


Zn absorption was investigated in healthy elderly subjects aged 71-78 years and in young subjects aged 23-43 years using serum concentration curve (SCC) tests. Both groups had similar Zn and protein status. The increase in serum Zn was monitored for 180 min after ingestion of 200 ml of soya milk enriched with 50 mg of Zn. Three levels of phytic acid were used: 0 g/200 ml (totally dephytinized soya milk), 0.13 g/200 ml (half dephytinized), and 0.26 g/200 ml (natural phytic acid content). In a first study the effect of 0 v. 0.26 g/200 ml phytic acid was compared in 10 elderly and 10 young subjects, each subject receiving both treatments. In a second study soya milks with 0 and 0.13 g/200 ml were tested in nine elderly and ten young subjects, again receiving both treatments. Mean areas under the curve of the SCC tests conducted with the 0 g/200 ml soya milk were found to be the same in both studies. Phytic acid strongly depressed Zn absorption in both studies (P < or = 0.05), but to a greater extent at the 0.26 g/200 ml level. No difference was found between the groups of young and elderly subjects. Therefore, no significant effect of aging on Zn absorption, as evaluated by the SCC test, or on the inhibitory effect of phytic acid was detected.

[Indexed for MEDLINE]

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