Effect of enrichment of maize meal with nicotinic acid and riboflavin upon the Vitamin and protein nutritional status of young school-going and pre-school children
AbstractA series of experiments was undertaken to investigate the feasibility of enriching maize meal with nicotinic acid and riboflavin. First the necessary level of enrichment was established and then the efficacy of such enrichment of maize was tested in the field on children and young adults. This report deals with the results of an experiment designed to establish whether such an enrichment scheme would have any detrimental effects on· young growing children with marginal protein calorie malnutrition. As in the previous experiments, a marked improvement in the nicotinic acid and riboflavin status was found in the experimental group. These biochemical findings were in conformity with the improvement in clinical status found. Moreover, such enrichment did not have any noticeable adverse effects. The hypothesis that vitamin enrichment could cause growth stimulation, and thus aggravate an existing marginal protein deficiency state, could not in any way be substantiated. The enrichment of maize meal with riboflavin and nicotinic acid during milling has been shown conclusively to be highly effective in improving the vitamin nutritional status while at the same time not harming the protein nutritional status of young children. Since the previous experiments proved it to be economically and technologically feasible, it is now strongly recommended that such an enrichment scheme be introduced on a national basis with the least possible delay.
S. Afr. Med. J., 48, 1641 (1974).
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