Maternal and Pediatric Nutrition

Maternal and Pediatric Nutrition
Open Access

ISSN: 2472-1182

+44 1223 790975


Impact of Spirulina on Nutritional Status, Haematological Profile and Anaemia Status in Malnourished Children in the Gaza Strip: Randomized Clinical Trial

Abed E, Ihab A. Naser, Suliman E and Mahmoud A

Abstract Background: Spirulina is a cyanobacterium blue-green alga rich in a wide range of nutrients include; protein, lipids, high level of various B vitamins, and minerals including calcium, iron, magnesium, manganese, potassium and zinc. Aims: The objective of this study is to assess the impact of nutritional rehabilitation using Spirulina platensis versus vitamins and minerals supplementation on the nutritional status, hematological profile, and anemia status of malnourished children less than 5 years of age. Method: The study utilized the experimental design in which 87 malnourished children aged less than 5 years attending an AEI rehabilitation program were enrolled. Children were stratified and simply randomized into two groups. Groups: Vitamin and Mineral group (A) 30 children treated daily with selected vitamins and minerals; and Spirulina group (B) 30 children of the same age range who were given 3 grams of Spirulina. Anthropometric measurements and blood samples were collected at baseline and after 3 months of the trial. Results: Baseline anthropometric indices of all the children were; Weight for Age Z (WAZ) score was – 2.42, Height for Age Z (HAZ) score was – 2.13, and Weight for Height Z (WHZ) score was – 2.09, which indicated that the children had poor anthropometric characteristics. After 12 weeks of intervention, Spirulina supplementation showed more significant improving effect on weight (p<0.011) and height (p<0.016) when compared with Vitamin and Mineral group. Moreover, Spirulina supplementation was more effective treatment for increasing the ferritin (5.97 ng/ml-38.71 ng/ml) and iron levels (66.09 μg/dL to 95.52 μg/dL) in subjects with moderate malnutrition before intervention. The results of conducting one-way repeated measure ANOVA indicated that Spirulina supplementation has significant improvement in Haemoglobin (p<0.001), Mean Corpuscle Volume (p<0.001) and Mean Corpuscular Haemoglobin (p<0.023) before and after the intervention between the two groups. Conclusions: The results of the study reflected that Spirulina was a valuable and more effective in treating malnutrition and anemia and could be used in a wide range of settings since it is cheap compared to other conventional pharmaceutical preparations and formulas