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5 - Nutritional deficiencies

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  22 September 2009

Robert Drewett
Affiliation:
University of Durham
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Summary

Iron deficiency

There are potentially many types of nutritional deficiency, because food contains many different nutrients. Golden (1995) classifies them into two types. Type 1 nutrients are needed for specific metabolic functions, and deficiencies in these nutrients lead to specific clinical signs that are characteristic of deficiency diseases, such as beri-beri (a result of vitamin B1 or thiamine deficiency), scurvy (vitamin C or ascorbic acid deficiency), xerophthalmia (vitamin A or retinol deficiency). There are body stores of most of the nutrients in this class. When consumption of the nutrients is inadequate, growth continues but the body stores of the nutrient are used up, leading to the specific clinical signs. These deficiencies can be measured biochemically (for example, by measuring thyroxine in iodine deficiency disorders). Type 2 nutrients, on the other hand, are needed for metabolism in general in all the tissues and organs of the body. These include the components of protein, but also, for example, zinc, potassium, sodium and magnesium. There are no body stores of most of these nutrients except the normal tissues of the body. So rather than leading to specific nutritional deficiencies with specific clinical signs, an inadequate intake of any of these nutrients leads to a generalised growth failure. There are no specific biochemical tests for these deficiencies. They are normally detected by the associated growth failure, measured anthropometrically.

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Publisher: Cambridge University Press
Print publication year: 2007

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  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Robert Drewett, University of Durham
  • Book: The Nutritional Psychology of Childhood
  • Online publication: 22 September 2009
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511489679.006
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  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Robert Drewett, University of Durham
  • Book: The Nutritional Psychology of Childhood
  • Online publication: 22 September 2009
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511489679.006
Available formats
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To save content items to your account, please confirm that you agree to abide by our usage policies. If this is the first time you use this feature, you will be asked to authorise Cambridge Core to connect with your account. Find out more about saving content to Google Drive.

  • Nutritional deficiencies
  • Robert Drewett, University of Durham
  • Book: The Nutritional Psychology of Childhood
  • Online publication: 22 September 2009
  • Chapter DOI: https://doi.org/10.1017/CBO9780511489679.006
Available formats
×