Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Another study states the obvious... but nothing will change

"Our study [also] indicates that children and adolescents who may face the greatest risks of vitamin and mineral deficiency are the least likely to be taking supplements," said Ulfat Shaikh, lead study author, assistant professor of pediatrics at the UC Davis School of Medicine and a clinician at UC Davis Children's Hospital.
"The study findings seem to bear out the hypothesis that cost is a barrier to children getting vitamins. Among households considered below the poverty level, 22 percent of children used vitamins. The number jumped to 43 percent among those not considered poor. Among households not enrolled in the federal Food Stamp Program, 38 percent of children used vitamins. But in households using food stamps, vitamin use was around 18 percent. Children in 36 percent of households where there is no hunger use vitamins; only 15 percent use vitamins in households where there is "food insecurity and hunger.""
U.S. families living in poverty are less likely to be able to provide adequate nutrition for their children or to supplement their diets with vitamins to compensate... I'm guessing the situation is probably similar here... so, how do we change it?

1 comment:

Alistair said...

So how do we change it...

I think we should treat the vitamin supplement makers the same way Nestle got treated for marketing baby formula to poverty level mothers in India. They are selling the problem, not the solution.

"Among households considered below the poverty level, 22 percent of children used vitamins."

Unless you have some otherwise unavoidable diet restriction, no MD is going to recommend pills over fresh fruit and veg. The goal should be to get this number close to 0 to free up mum's budgets for good food.

Baby forumula has labels saying "Mothers milk is best". Perhaps supplements should have a label that says "Fruit and veg are best"?