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Foreign university students are at risk of Micronutrient deficiency

Everyone knows the importance of having healthy, timely meals throughout the day. However, sometimes our busy schedules make us forget to replenish our bodies, thus increasing the risk of nutrient deficiency.

The situation is much worse when it comes to university students. When people go to university, a healthy diet seems to drop to the bottom of their priority lists no matter how diet-conscious they were before attending college.

Among all the micronutrients, the deficiency of iron, zinc, iodine, and copper has been well observed and documented, and it is likely to affect overall health.

Foreign students are considered as a population at high risk of health problems, therefore, monitoring of micronutrient status of foreign students may provide a significant tool for the prevention of essential trace element deficiency and associated adverse health effects.

For this purpose, a group of researchers in Moscow performed a comparative analysis of hair and urinary levels of essential trace elements in Russian and foreign first-year students attending the Peoples’ Friendship University of Russia.

They observed that the students from Asia, the Middle East, and Latin America have low levels of iron, cobalt, copper, and manganese whereas students from Africa have low levels of hair Zn content while having a tendency to increase urinary metal excretion. These findings are indicative of a higher risk of essential trace element deficiency. Therefore, monitoring and modulation of nutritional trace element status may significantly improve the health and educational performance of students.

Source: Pakistan Journal of Nutrition

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