Anaemia in relation to low bioavailability of dietary iron among school-aged children in the Aral Sea region, Kazakhstan.Int J Food Sci Nutr. 2004 Feb; 55(1):37-43.IJ
This study investigates anaemia related to the sufficiency of dietary iron intake of school-aged children in the Kzyl-Orda region of Kazakhstan. We conducted a cross-sectional study of 97 school-aged children living in Kzyl-Orda. Blood samples were collected for measuring haemoglobin. Dietary intake data were obtained from 24-h dietary recalls. Iron bioavailability was estimated with algorithms adjusting for absorption enhancers (meat, fish and poultry, and vitamin C) and inhibitors (tea and phytates) consumed in the same meal. The median total iron intakes were adequate compared with the median basal iron requirement; however, the median bioavailable iron intakes were well below the median absorbed iron requirement. Available iron was 6.9-7.2% of the total iron intake after adjusting for the absorption enhancers, and was reduced by 3.1-4.4% after adjusting for both enhancers and inhibitors. After adjustment for energy intake, higher iron intake was significantly associated with a decreased prevalence of anaemia (odds ratio, 0.39; 95% confidence interval, 0.16-0.93; P=0.034). Some evidence suggested an association between bioavailable iron intake after adjustment of absorption enhancers and inhibitors (odds ratio, 0.43; 95% confidence interval, 0.18-1.01; P=0.053). In conclusion, low bioavailability of dietary iron seems related to anaemia in the region. Although iron fortification or supplementation programmes can be useful for promoting the anaemia prevention control programme, further efforts for nutritional education suited for family level dietary practice are necessary.