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Bioavailability of Micronutrients: Stable Isotope Techniques to Develop Effective Food-Based Strategies to Combat Micronutrient Deficiencies

Davidsson, Lena, Haskell, Marjorie
bioavailability, carotenes, children, developing countries, food fortification, infants, iodine, iron, nutrient deficiencies, public health, stable isotopes, vitamin A, women, zinc
The prevalence of micronutrient deficiencies, in particular those of iron, vitamin A, iodine, and zinc, is unacceptably high, especially among infants, children, and women of childbearing age in developing countries. Effective food-based strategies to combat these public health problems are therefore urgently needed. As only a fraction of dietary iron, zinc, and provitamin A carotenoids is absorbed and utilized, i.e., bioavailable, access to information on micronutrient bioavailability is crucial in the development of food fortification strategies and interventions based on dietary diversification. Review of literature This overview highlights the usefulness of stable isotope techniques to assess the bioavailability of nonheme iron and provitamin A carotenoids and the importance of generating data on micro-nutrient bioavailability to move the agenda forward.