The Helen Keller International food-frequency method underestimates vitamin A intake where sustained breastfeeding is common
Authors: Persson, Viveka; Greiner, Ted; Islam, Sirajul; Gebre-Medhin, Mehari
Source: Food & Nutrition Bulletin, Volume 19, Number 4, December 1998 , pp. 343-346(4)
Abstract:A recent innovation in assessing community vitamin A status is the Helen Keller International food-frequency method, which is based on weekly intakes of key foods among pre-school children. Since it excludes breastmilk, we investigated whether the amount of breastmilk received by 40 children aged one to three years in a rural area of Bangladesh contributed significantly to their vitamin A intake. Vitamin A intake was indirectly calculated from the consumption of breastmilk, which was quantified over a 9-hour period by a test-weighing technique. The estimated mean 24-hour milk intake was 548 g for the 97% who were breastfed at 12 to 23 months and 312 g for the 73% who were breastfed at 24 to 36 months. This represents an average daily intake of 41% and 23% of the safe recommended daily intake (400 RE) for vitamin A, respectively. The Helen Keller International food-frequency method should be revalidated for settings where breastfeeding is sustained beyond infancy.
Document Type: Research Article
Publication date: December 1998
- Established in 1978, the Food and Nutrition Bulletin (FNB) is a peer-reviewed journal published quarterly by the Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation in association with the United Nations University. The focus of the journal is to highlight original scientific articles on nutrition research, policy analyses, and state-of-the-art summaries relating to multidisciplinary efforts to alleviate the problems of hunger and malnutrition in the developing world.
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