Logo of Phnom Penh Post newspaper Phnom Penh Post - Methods of dispensing vitamin A

Methods of dispensing vitamin A

Methods of dispensing vitamin A

Finding the way to a permanent nutrition solution

Fortification of staple foods
Supplementation is often followed by fortification of staple foods and should substitute supplementation over time. This intervention entails adding Vitamin A to one or more widely consumed staple foods. Fortification is justified when widespread or blanket coverage is desired.This implies that VAD is extensive and not limited to specific groups or isolated communities. Coverage can include whole country or a region.

Fortification does not require people to change their dietary habits. Thus, the target population continues to eat the fortified food as a vehicle. The Vitamin A added provides low but constant amounts, so there is little risk that intake become undesirably high.

A large proportion of the population should consume the food vehicle, especially those at major risk of VAD. There should be little day-to-day and inter-individual variation in the amount of the food vehicle (staple) consumed. The food vehicle should go through central processing where Vitamin A can be added under controlled conditions. Rice, shorgum, maize, roots or tubers are the major source of energy in many countries, but these foods lack Vitamin A. In theory, these staple foods could be perceived as appropriate due to their widespread use.

However, they are usually processed and cooked at home, thus making it impractical or impossible to fortify them centrally under controlled conditions. Hence, the most common vehicles for food fortification are wheat flour, sugar, vegetable oil and salt. These staple foods are normally produced in large factories.

Nutrition education and home gardening
The permanent and logical solution to eliminating Vitamin A deficiency should be through modifications in patterns of food production, consumption and distribution. These can be done through the application of agricultural or horticultural and educational alleviation strategies. This is a long-term part of the strategy and should be started along with the interventions mentioned above.

MOST VIEWED

  • Proof giants walked among us humans?

    For years a debate has waged about whether certain bas relief carvings at the 12th-century To Prohm Temple, one of the most popular attractions at the Angkor Wat Temple Complex in Siem Reap province, depicted dinosaurs or some rather less exotic and more contemporary animal,

  • New US bill ‘is a violation of Cambodian independence’

    After a US congressmen introduced bipartisan legislation that will enact sanctions on Cambodian officials responsible for “undermining democracy” in the Kingdom, government officials and the ruling Cambodian People’s Party on Sunday said they regarded the potential action as the “violation of independence and sovereignty

  • Long way to go before Cambodia gets a ‘smart city’

    Phnom Penh, Siem Reap and Battambang will struggle to attain smart city status without adopting far reaching master plans, according to officials tasked with implementing the program. The brainchild of the Association of Southeast Asian Nations (Asean), the smart city program seeks to link up

  • Japan bank buys major stake in ANZ Royal Bank

    Japan's largest bank acquired more than half of ANZ’s shares in Cambodia on Thursday, according to a statement from Kith Meng’s Royal Group. Japan's JTrust Bank, announced that they had acquired a 55% of stake in ANZ Royal Bank. According to a Royal Group