Iron deficiency is costly Anaemia and iron deficiency

The capacity of the body to transport oxygen is one of the factors which limits physical performance. Oxygen is transported in the blood by the pigment of the red blood cells (haemoglobin). If the concentration of haemoglobin is reduced, the oxygen-transporting capacity of the body is impaired, and therefore the capacity to perform drops.

Anemia is said to occur when the concentration of haemoglobin falls below that specified as normal for the individual's age and sex.

Iron deficiency and anaemia affect more than 3.5 billion people around the world (World Health Organization) resulting in health problems and cognitive impairment at all stages of life.

Malnutrition jeopardizes Asia’s tremendous economic potential

“It is vital for everyone to play their part in making sure women and children, particularly adolescent girls, get proper nourishment,” says World Food Programme Deputy Executive Director Sheila Sisulu, noting that Asia’s catastrophic malnutrition levels are the single greatest barrier to the evolution of a modern, knowledge-based work force that can manage the economic powerhouse it has the promise to become.

A mother weakened by iron and vitamin A deficiency cannot give her children the upbringing needed to complete their education and achieve their full social and economic potential. As the primary caregiver of the family, a mother needs essential micronutrients in order to do her job well.

It is also crucial for infants and young children to get good nutrition at this vital stage of their development. Malnutrition in early childhood undermines children’s physical stature and cognitive abilities and impedes their performance in school.

Undernourished adolescent girls bear underweight babies, who then continue the insidious cycle of malnutrition into the next generation

Tremendous economic consequences

Anaemic adults and children cost developing countries billions of dollars in lost productivity, according to a recent study.

"One in three of the world's population suffers from anaemia so this has tremendous economic consequences," said Sue Horton, a University of Toronto economics professor and lead author of the study, 'The Economics of Iron Deficiency'.

South Asia, Central America, Africa and the Middle East

Horton and co-author Jay Ross, an epidemiologist from the non-profit organisation Academy for Educational Development, calculated the economic impact of iron deficiencies in 10 developing countries in South Asia, Central America, Africa and the Middle East.

They found that, on average, a country loses 0.6 per cent of its gross domestic product (GDP) due to physical productivity losses from adults lacking iron. When learning and motor impairments in anaemic children are added, the figure rises dramatically to 4 per cent of its GDP.

Billions of dollars lost

According to UN statistics, more than 500 million Asians do not get enough food to meet daily needs for nutritional well-being. Micronutrient deficiencies are especially serious: babies are born mentally retarded as a result of iodine deficiency, children go blind and die of vitamin A deficiency, and enormous numbers of women and children are sapped by iron deficiency anaemia.

At the same time, World Bank studies show that productivity losses due to various types of malnutrition in low-income Asian countries constitute about two to three percent of the Gross National Product (and eight per cent in Bangladesh).

Supplementation is a good investment

The OptiFer® series of iron food supplements are safe, efficient and very well tolerated, which is crucial for therapy success.

They give an optimal dose and can be used over longer periods with no change in efficacy or tolerance.

OptiFer® products compete favorably with the regular syntethic supplements.

OptiFer® tablets are based on natural bovine heme iron and will safely and efficiently keep iron counts at an optimal level.
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FerroCare Division of MediTec Group de ideias
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Created with images by Scot Nelson - "Sugarcane (Saccharum officinarum): Iron (Fe) deficiency" • J P Davidson - "Checking for malnutrition" • bksutherland - "Faculty of Law, University of Toronto" • neiljs - "Old Delhi market" • Arenamontanus - "World Bank Building"

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