NAFDAC seeks sustained action against malnutrition among children, women
The acting Director General of the National Agency for Food, Drug Administration and Control (NAFDAC), Mrs. Yetunde Oni has called for the expansion and sustenance of food fortification programme in Nigeria to tackle the devastating effect of malnutrition and poor dietary intake in the country.
Oni, who made the called at the National Fortification Alliance (NFA) meeting in Lagos, noted that infants, young children, teenagers, pregnant and breast feeding mothers were prone to becoming malnourished and as such, required additional nutrients all the time.
According to her, five out of about 21 widely known micro nutrients are of public health significance (vitamin A, Iron, Iodine, Zinc and folic acid.), which contribute significantly to good health and necessary for proper growth and development of the body and for human survival.
She said one in four children under the age of five suffered from vitamin A deficiency, while 31 percent of mothers in Nigeria were iodine- deficient.
” Available statistics show that nutrition contributes to over 50 percent child mortality in Nigeria. “These statistics make it unimaginable to question the importance of micro nutrients to achieving the socio economic development of any country and attaining the Sustainable Development Goals,” she added.
She stressed that in order to meet set United Nations targets on food fortification, NAFDAC in 2005 developed the Vitamin A Food Fortification Regulations.
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