Dietary mineral supplies in Africa

Edward J M Joy, E Louise Ander, Scott D Young, Colin R Black, Michael J Watts, Allan D C Chilimba, Benson Chilima, Edwin W P Siyame, Alexander A Kalimbira, Rachel Hurst, Susan J Fairweather-Tait, Alexander J Stein, Rosalind S Gibson, Philip J White, Martin R Broadley

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174 Citations (Scopus)


Dietary micronutrient deficiencies (MNDs) are widespread, yet their prevalence can be difficult to assess. Here, we estimate MND risks due to inadequate intakes for seven minerals in Africa using food supply and composition data, and consider the potential of food-based and agricultural interventions. Food Balance Sheets (FBSs) for 46 countries were integrated with food composition data to estimate per capita supply of calcium (Ca), copper (Cu), iron (Fe), iodine (I), magnesium (Mg), selenium (Se) and zinc (Zn), and also phytate. Deficiency risks were quantified using an estimated average requirement (EAR) 'cut-point' approach. Deficiency risks are highest for Ca (54% of the population), followed by Zn (40%), Se (28%) and I (19%, after accounting for iodized salt consumption). The risk of Cu (1%) and Mg (
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)208-229
Number of pages22
JournalPhysiologia Plantarum
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - Jul 2014

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