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Fortification of staple foods with zinc for improving zinc status and other health outcomes in the general population

Publication Details

Authors: Dheeraj Shah, Harshpal S Sachdev, Tarun Gera, Luz Maria De-Regil and Juan Pablo Peña-Rosas
Publication date: 9 June 2016
Source: Cochrane Database of Systematic Reviews. Issue 6, Art. No.: CD010697


The present review evaluated the beneficial and adverse effects of zinc-fortified staple foods on health-related outcomes and biomarkers of zinc status in the general population. Seven of the eight trials included were from middle-income countries of Asia, Africa, Europe, and Latin America where zinc deficiency is likely to be a public health problem.

Authors found zinc-fortified foods may improve population serum zinc status if zinc is the only micronutrient used for fortification. If zinc is added to food in combination with other micronutrients, it may make little or no difference to serum zinc status. The effects of zinc fortification of foods on other health outcomes (zinc deficiency, children’s growth, cognition, work capacity of adults, or on haematological indicators) are unknown at this time. Given the small number of trials and participants in each trial, further investigation of these outcomes is required.



Fortification, Global, Research Documents, Zinc