June 23, 2003
Iron Chelate Improves Anemia Rates in UnderprivilegedChildren
Anemic children living in precarious socialeconomic conditions significantly benefited from taking an iron-fortified wheybeverage for one year, according to a study in the May issue of Nutrition (www.elsevier.com/locate/nut).Researchers from the University of Londrina in Paran, Brazil, recruited 467children (7 to 14 years), 41.9 percent of whom were anemic at baseline. Theywere all given a daily supplemental beverage that contained 8 g ofcarbohydrates, .2 g of fat, .9 g of protein, .5 g of minerals, 12 mg of iron,400 mcg of vitamin A, 5 mcg of vitamin D and 32 mg of vitamin C. The iron in thedrink was Ferrochel, a ferrous bisglycinate ingredient supplied by Clearfield,Utah-based Albion Advanced Nutrition.
After three months, researchers did not see a reduction in anemia rates,although after six months, 26.4 percent of children remained anemic, and afterone year, only 9.6 percent of children were anemic. Researchers hypothesized thechelated iron ingredient accounted for the significant decreases in anemia ratesbecause it prevented iron from binding to inhibitors in the food. This goodresponse can be explained by the use of ferrous bisglycinate chelate, a compoundthat seems particularly useful in phytate-rich diets, as is the case of the dietin our subjects, combined with the use of a whey drink containing frozenstrawberry as the food vehicle, a product that does not contain casein but doescontain vitamins A and C, they concluded.
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