Volume 65, Issue 12 (2 2008)                   Tehran Univ Med J 2008, 65(12): 72-77 | Back to browse issues page

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Pourhashemi S.J., Golestan B.2., Keshavarz S.A.. Micronutrients Fe, Zn and Ca and their relationship with anthropometric indices and dental health among children. Tehran Univ Med J. 2008; 65 (12) :72-77
URL: http://tumj.tums.ac.ir/article-1-691-en.html
Abstract:   (4661 Views)

Background: Proper nutrition has an important role in the physical and psychological development of children. The aim of this survey is to compare the nutrition of a community to the recommended daily amount (RDA) to determine deficiencies and present recommendations for improvement.

Methods: In this cross-sectional study conducted in Tehran, Iran, 788 children, all seven years of age, were selected via cluster sampling and evaluated using standard questionnaires with a 24-hr recall regarding the frequency and type of food intake. Then by measurement of weight and height, their anthropometric and DMFT (decayed/missing/filled teeth) indices were determined using the Kruskal-Wallis one-way analysis of variance, and Mann-Whitney U and chi-square tests.

Results: Relative to the RDA, 23.6% of children had low intake of Ca, and 3.2% and 5.2% were deficient for Fe and Zn, respectively. Anthropometric measurements showed that 15.7% were malnourished based on weight for age, 10.5% based on height for age and 16.8% based on weight for height indices. The DMFT indices for children with dietary Ca levels under 75% of the RDA were significantly higher than those with sufficient Ca intake (P<0.001). The mean DMFT indices for dental development were 0.22 for permanent teeth (four molars SD=0.64) and 4.64 for primary teeth (SD=3.24). We found a significant correlation between DMFT indices and low Fe intake: the DMFT indices of children with iron deficiency were much higher than those with sufficient iron intake.

Conclusions: Children in Tehran do not receive enough Ca Fe and Zn from their diets. This problem causes mild malnutrition and increases the risk of dental caries.

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