Nigerians Suffer Vitamin, Mineral Deficiency - Minister

  • Thursday, November 25, 2004 - By Julcit Onigbogi
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Minister for Health, Professor Eyitayo Lambo has decried the recent United Nations assessment that says there is still serious vitamin and mineral deficiency problems among the Nigerian populace.

Speaking at the Launch of vitamin ‰A¡ food fortification programme, vitamin, and mineral deficiency damage assessment report for Nigeria, Lambo said several preventive micronutrient nutrition strategies have been embarked on in the country in varying degrees and with varying successes as well.

He attributed the successes and heights attained so far to the National agency for Food and Drug Administration and Control, NAFDAC even as has implored all food manufacturers, policy makers, royal fathers, primary health care coordinators and other stake holders to actively support the food fortification programme. Everyone has a part to play for the success of this program, we may have to bear some inconveniences here and there, but it is worthwhile to lat a solid foundation for the sake of posterity."

Vitamins and minerals such as vitamin A, iron, folic acid, zinc, and iodine are essential macronutrients required for proper functioning of the human body. The true significance of vitamin and mineral deficiency (VMD) is only just being revealed, but it has maimed and killed many over the years especially in developing countries.

Nigeria has one of the highest rates of child and maternal mortality in the world and vitamin A deficiency disorders is a major contributory factor.

Dr Dora Akunyili, DG of NAFDAC in her remarks pleaded with Nigerians to join forces in making out an agenda and work plan on how to achieve this Millennium development goal within the given frame.

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