Philadelphia, PA, March 25, 2011 A new study published in the April 2011 issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association indicates that inadequate nutrition is linked to a greater risk of anemia in postmenopausal women.
"This study suggests that inadequate nutrient intakes are a significant risk factor for anemia in this population of older women and use of multivitamin/mineral supplements is not associated with lower rates of anemia," reports lead investigator Cynthia A. Thomson, PhD, RD, Associate Professor Nutritional Sciences, University of Arizona, Tucson. "Overall mortality is increased in relation to a diagnosis of anemia, and anemia, particularly iron deficiency, has been associated with reduced capacity for physical work and physical inactivity, injury related to falls and hospitalizations, making this an important health care concern in the aging." The authors also point out that there have been few studies of anemia and diet of independently living women in the past 20 years.
Using data from 72,833 women in the Observational Cohort of the Women's Health Initiative (WHI-OS), researchers found that deficiencies in more than a single nutrient were associated with a 21% greater risk of persistent anemia while three deficiencies resulted in a 44% increase in risk for persistent anemia. Inadequate intakes of multiple anemia-associated nutrients were less frequent in non-Hispanic whites (7.4%) than other race/ethnic groups (15.2% of Native Americans/Alaskans, 14.6% Asian/Pacific Islanders, 15.3% of African Americans and 16.3% of Hispanic/Latinos reported all three nutrient inadequacies). Women with anemia reported lower intakes of energy, protein, folate, vitamin B12, iron, vitamin C and red meat. In fact, inadequate intake of dietary iron, vitamin B12 and folate were each associated with approximately 10% to 20% elevated risk for incident anemia among WHI-OS study participants and the odds increased for persistent anemia
|Contact: Francesca Costanzo|
Elsevier Health Sciences