NUTRITIONAL STATUS, ANEMIA AND ASSOCIATED FACTORS IN CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS ATTENDING PUBLIC SCHOOLS IN THE NORTHEAST OF BRAZIL: A BEFORE AND AFTER INTERVENTION WITH IRON SUPPLEMENTATION

Eliana Pereira Vellozo, Josefina Aparecida Pellegrini Braga, Maria Aparecida Zanetti Passos, Peter Richard Hall, Mauro Fisberg

Abstract


OBJECTIVE: To assess nutritional status and factors associated with iron deficiency in children and adolescents, before and after intervention with iron amino chelate.

METHODS: In this community-based, double-blind, randomized controlled trial, we assessed children aged 3-14 years. Children were cluster randomized to receive either iron supplemented food (intervention), or the same food without supplement (control).

RESULTS: Most participants presented adequate height-for-age and BMI-for-age values. No association between nutritional status and the iron deficiency anemia (IDA), independently of the allocation group, was observed. After intervention, there was a reduction of anemic children in both groups; however there was a more significant reduction in the intervention group when compared to the control group, p<0.0001. There was also a greater reduction in the number anemic individuals with low height-for-age in the intervention group when compared to control, p=0,028. Those who remained anemic during the study were more likely to present short stature at the end, with no association or difference between the two groups.

CONCLUSIONS: It was concluded that in the supplementation group that those who remained anemic during the trial were more likely to continue anemic after intervention, with shorter stature; with no other association or difference between groups.

Keywords


Iron deficiency anemia; Nutritional status; Obesity; Children; Adolescents.

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