Micronutrient deficiencies remain a common problem worldwide. Current deficits of vitamin D, calcium and vitamin E will continue to increase in certain regions in the future. This appears from a recent study in which the changes in food and nutrition security up to 2050 have been investigated.
The research was conducted by the University of Illinois. It is expected that in the future most people will not lack food and will not go hungry, but they will lack important nutrients such as vitamins and minerals. Delivering nutritious diets is the biggest challenge in the area of food security in 2050. There will be a big difference in the intake of vitamins and minerals between different countries and regions with shortages as a result.
Climate change, income growth and changing diets play an important role in this and make it difficult to find sustainable solutions. Because of climate change, for example, certain crops can no longer be grown or they simply become too expensive. Food also contains fewer and fewer vitamins and minerals. The study also shows that the number of people with obesity continues to increase. In contrast, malnutrition continues to persist in vulnerable populations.
Persistent micronutrient deficiencies
Carbohydrates and proteins are sufficiently available worldwide, where there are deficits for certain micronutrients. Calcium, vitamin D, folate and vitamin E deficits are expected to remain global in 2050. Iron, copper, zinc, folic acid, vitamin A, vitamin B12, vitamin E and vitamin K deficiencies depend on socio-economic factors and climate. Intake of iron, zinc, vitamin B12, copper and vitamin B2 is related to the level of income; Deficiencies in these nutrients are more likely to occur in low-income countries. Especially iron, zinc, vitamin A and vitamin K remain a problem here.
Supplements as a supplement
Research institutes and governments must focus on sustainable food security and improving nutritional value. The availability and affordability of nutrient-rich foods must be improved, as must the diversity of food. In addition, this study also shows opportunities for supplementation to supplement vitamins and minerals from food and to combat deficiencies.