Risk of dietary magnesium deficiency is low in most African countries based on food supply data
- 595 Downloads
Dietary mineral deficiencies are widespread in Africa. Our previous studies in Malawi revealed population-level shortfalls in dietary calcium and selenium supply but adequate dietary magnesium (Mg) supply. Here we examine dietary Mg supply throughout Africa.
Food supply data from 1961 to 2007 were compiled using Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) Food Balance Sheets (FBSs). Magnesium supply was estimated for each country using regional food Mg composition tables.
Mean Mg supply in 2007 was 649 mg capita −1 d−1, ranging from 188 mg d−1 in Eritrea to 1,828 mg d−1 in Burkina Faso. Magnesium supply was greater in West Africa than in other regions, was dominated by sorghum, maize and wheat and was correlated with calorie supply. The World Health Organization (WHO) Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) for Mg (217 mg capita −1 d−1 for adult males) was exceeded in most countries. Using the EAR cut-point method, the risk of dietary Mg deficiency in Africa is <4 % and unlikely to be a major problem, assuming access to sufficient food and that phytic acid does not compromise Mg absorption.
Estimating Mg supply is highly sensitive to concentration data available for the primary staple crops. Given that soil factors profoundly affect crop Mg concentration, there is a need to increase the spatial resolution of food composition tables for the staple crops.
KeywordsBiofortification Calcium Fertilisers Food balance sheets GIS Magnesium Maize Micronutrients Soil
Author contributions to this study were funded by the British Geological Survey and the University of Nottingham.
- Allen L, de Benoit B, Dary O, Hurrell R (eds) (2006) Guidelines on food fortification with micronutrients. World Health Organization and Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations, Geneva, SwitzerlandGoogle Scholar
- Bates B, Lennox A, Bates C, Swan G (2011) National diet and nutrition survey. Headline results from years 1 and 2 (Combined) of the rolling programme (2008/09-2009/10). Department of Health in England and the UK Food Standards Agency. http://www.dh.gov.uk/en/Publicationsandstatistics/Publications/PublicationsStatistics/DH_128166. Accessed 19 March 2012
- Broadley MR, Chilimba ADC, Joy E, Young SD, Black CR, Ander EL, Watts MJ, Hurst R, Fairweather-Tait SJ, White PJ, Gibson RS (2012) Dietary requirements for magnesium but not calcium are likely to be met in Malawi based on national food supply data. Int J Vitam Nutr Res (in press)Google Scholar
- Central Intelligence Agency (CIA) World factbook 2011. https://www.cia.gov/library/publication. Accessed 3 February 2012
- Coudray C, Rayssiguier Y (2001) Impact of vegetable products on intake, intestinal absorption and status of magnesium. In: Rayssiguier Y, Mazur A, Durlach J (eds) Advances in magnesium research: nutrition and health. John Libbey, LondonGoogle Scholar
- Department of Health (1991) Dietary reference values for food energy and nutrients for the United Kingdom. Report on Health and Social Subjects No. 41. Her Majesty’s Stationery Office (HMSO), London, UKGoogle Scholar
- Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) (2001) Food balance sheets: a handbook. Food and Agriculture Organization, RomeGoogle Scholar
- Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization (FAO/WHO) (2004) Vitamin and mineral requirements in human nutrition, 2nd edn. United Nations, GenevaGoogle Scholar
- Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) (2011) FBS data. http://faostat.fao.org. Accessed 14 December 2011
- Galan P, Preziosi P, Durlach V, Valeix P, Ribas L, Bouzid D, Favier A, Hercberg S (1997) Dietary magnesium intake in a French adult population. Magnesium Res 10:321–328Google Scholar
- Henderson L, Irving K, Gregory J, Bates C, Prentice A, Perks J, Swan G, Farron M (2003) The national diet and nutrition survey: adults aged 19 to 64 years, volume 3. Vitamin and mineral intake and urinary analytes. Her Majesty’s Stationery Office (HMSO), LondonGoogle Scholar
- Hoare J, Henderson L, Bates CJ, Prentice A, Birch M, Swan G, Farron M (2004) The national diet and nutrition survey: adults aged 19 to 64 years, volume 3. Summary report. Her Majesty’s Stationery Office (HMSO), LondonGoogle Scholar
- Institute of Medicine (IOM) (1997) Dietary reference intakes for calcium, phosphorus, magnesium, vitamin D, and fluoride. National Academy Press, Washington, D.CGoogle Scholar
- Korkalo L, Hauta-Alus H, Mutanen M (2011) Food composition tables for Mozambique, Version 2. Department of Food and Environmental Sciences, University of Helsinki, HelsinkiGoogle Scholar
- Lukmanji Z, Hertzmark E, Mlingi N, Assey V, Ndossi G, Fawzi W (2008) Tanzania food composition tables. Muhimbili Universty College of Health and Allied Sciences, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania; Tanzania Food and Nutrition Center, Dar es Salaam, Tanzania; Harvard School of Public Health, Boston, USAGoogle Scholar
- National Statistics Office (NSO) (2004) Second integrated household survey (IHS-2). National Statistics Office, Zomba, MalawiGoogle Scholar
- Prynne CJ, Paul AA (2011) Food composition table for use in the Gambia. MRC Human Nutrition Research, CambridgeGoogle Scholar
- Rosanoff A (2010) Rising Ca: Mg intake ratio from food in USA adults: a concern? Magnesium Res 23:S181–S193Google Scholar
- Sen A (1981) Poverty and famines: an essay on entitlement and deprivation. Clarendon, OxfordGoogle Scholar
- Stadlmayr B, Charrondiere RU, Addy P, Samb B, Enujiugha VN, Bayili RG, Fagbohoun EG, Smith IF, Thiam I, Burlingame B (2010) Composition of selected foods from West Africa. Food and Agriculture Organization, RomeGoogle Scholar
- Stoltzfus RJ (2003) Iron deficiency: global prevalence and consequences. Food Nutr Bull 24:99–103Google Scholar
- U.S. Department of Agriculture, Agricultural Research Service (USDA-ARS) (2011) USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference, Release 24. Nutrient Data Laboratory Home Page. http://www.ars.usda.gov/nutrientdata. Accessed 30 November 2011
- Wolmarans P, Danster N, Dalton A, Rossouw K, Schonfeldt H (eds) (2010) Condensed food composition tables for South Africa. Medical Research Council, Cape Town, South AfricaGoogle Scholar
- Wuelher SE, Peerson JM, Brown KH (2005) Use of national food balance data to estimate the adequacy of zinc in national food supplies: methodology and regional estimates. Public Heatlh Nutr 8:812–819Google Scholar