Blog | Friday, April 6, 2012

QD: News Every Day--Americans generally get enough vitamins and minerals

Nutrition deficiencies have improved in some specific areas and generally haven't gotten worse in the past decade, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Less than 10% or less of the general U.S. population had nutrition deficiencies for specific vitamins and minerals, although age, gender and race/ethnicity played a role. The CDC looked at data from its National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from 2003 through 2006. The prevalence of nutrient deficiencies hasn't changed when compared to data from 1999 to 2006.

For example:
--Less than 1% of children and adolescents were deficient in vitamin B12 compared to 4% of older adults.
--Vitamin C deficiency occurred in 7% of men and 5% of women.
--Vitamin D deficiency occurred in 31% of non-Hispanic blacks and 12% Mexican-Americans, compared to 3% of non-Hispanic white people.

To reduce the risk of neural-tube defects in newborns, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration introduced mandatory folic acid fortification of enriched cereal grain products in 1998. Since then, blood folate levels increased by about 50% in the population, and then decreased less than 10% across the population from 1999-2002 to 2003-2006, as a result of the intentional small reduction in the amount of folic acid added to foods. Before fortification, folate deficiency was about 10 to 12% in women of childbearing age.

Other findings include:
--Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA), which is typically derived from seafood and supplements, were higher in fasted non-Hispanic blacks and whites compared to Mexican-American adults. Docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) levels were higher in non-Hispanic black compared to Mexican-American and non-Hispanic white adults.
--Low body iron (less than 0 mg/kg) was higher in Mexican-American children compared to non-Hispanic black and non-Hispanic white children. It was higher in Mexican-American and non-Hispanic black women ages 12 to 49 years compared to non-Hispanic white women.
--Iodine intake was generally adequate on the basis of median urine iodine levels. However, women ages 20 to 39 years had the lowest iodine intake, just slightly above insufficient. Young women merit special attention to ensure the best possible brain development of the fetus during pregnancy. Boys ages 6 to 11 had the highest intake, and the upper confidence limit of the median was just slightly within the range of excessive intake.

In case you missed it ...
Short health care providers could benefit from using a step stool for CPR, according to a study in Resuscitation

Fifty rescuers of varying heights performed CPR on a step stool and without one. They ranged from just under five feet tall to six feet, three inches, with the median of about five feet, six inches.

Using a step stool increase compression depth an average of 4 mm and increase in incomplete recoil by about 18%. The effect was more pronounced in the shortest tertile of rescuers (9 +/- 9 mm vs. 2 +/- 6 mm for those rescuers taller than the median height.

"Using a step stool when performing CPR in a bed results in a trade-off between increased compression depth and increased incomplete recoil," the authors wrote. "Given the nonlinear relationship between the increase in compression depth and rescuer height, the benefit of a step stool may outweigh the risks of incomplete release for rescuers less than," five feet six inches.