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Iron, Zinc, Folate, and Vitamin B-12 Status Increased among Women and Children in Yaounde and Douala, Cameroon, 1 Year after Introducing Fortified Wheat Flour

In this study, the authors investigated the impact of mandatory wheat flour fortification on micronutrient status among women aged 15–49 years and children 12–59 months of age in Yaoundé and Douala, Cameroon by conducting representative surveys two years before and one year after the large-scale fortification program. More than 90 percent of the population surveyed consumed wheat flour in the last 7 days. The researchers found an improvement in iron, zinc, folate, and vitamin B-12 status among women and children in urban Cameroon post-fortification. Additionally, anemia incidence in mothers was significantly lower after mandatory wheat flour fortification (39.1%), compared to pre-fortification (46.7%), after adjusting for inflammation and malaria; however, there was no change in either mean hemoglobin concentrations or anemia prevalence in children.

Engle-Stone, R., et. al., Journal of Nutrition (June 2017).