Very low adequacy of micronutrient intakes by young children and women in rural Bangladesh is primarily explained by low food intake and limited diversity.J Nutr 2013; 143(2):197-203JN
Documentation of micronutrient intake inadequacies among developing country populations is important for planning interventions to control micronutrient deficiencies. The objective of this study was to quantify micronutrient intakes by young children and their primary female caregivers in rural Bangladesh. We measured 24-h dietary intakes on 2 nonconsecutive days in a representative sample of 480 children (ages 24-48 mo) and women in 2 subdistricts of northern Bangladesh by using 12-h weighed food records and subsequent 12-h recall in homes. We calculated the probability of adequacy (PA) of usual intakes of 11 micronutrients and an overall mean PA, and evaluated dietary diversity by counting the total number of 9 food groups consumed. The overall adequacy of micronutrient intakes was compared to dietary diversity scores using correlation and multivariate regression analyses. The overall mean prevalence of adequacy of micronutrient intakes for children was 43% and for women was 26%. For children, the prevalence of adequate intakes for each of the 11 micronutrients ranged from a mean of 0 for calcium to 95% for vitamin B-6 and was <50% for iron, calcium, riboflavin, folate, and vitamin B-12. For women, mean or median adequacy was <50% for all nutrients except vitamin B-6 and niacin and was <1% for calcium, vitamin A, riboflavin, folate, and vitamin B-12. The mean PA (MPA) was correlated with energy intake and dietary diversity, and multivariate models including these variables explained 71-76% of the variance in MPA. The degree of micronutrient inadequacy among young children and women in rural Bangladesh is alarming and is primarily explained by diets low in energy and little diversity of foods.