Saturday, January 16, 2021

Fortification of milk

Although milk is one of the most nutritious foods and it contributes to total daily energy intake as well as other macro and micronutrients, it is not a good source of several micronutrients like copper, iron and vitamins C, D, K and some B-complex vitamins.

Milk also lacks some of the nutraceuticals such as omega-3 fatty acids such as α-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), and dietary fiber.

Fortification of milk with micronutrients play a major role in relieving nutritional deficiency problems in humans. It can improve the palatability and sensory of the products. The consumer benefits from healthy products that provide alternatives sources of micronutrients to meet their nutrient requirements.

The dairy industry benefits from the development of fortified products that are tasty and appealing and can be advertised as having high mineral contents.

Fortification can be defined as the practice of deliberately increasing the content of an essential micronutrient, i.e., vitamins and minerals (including trace elements) in a food, so as to improve the nutritional quality of the food supply and provide a public health benefit with minimal risk to health.

Milk is a preferred food for fortification because it is readily available, widely accepted, and frequently fed to young children. It is economical when compared with, for example, supplements, and is a commonly used food in the home.

The micronutrients which are commonly used in the fortification of the food products  such as milk and its products are:
• Vitamins and co-vitamins
• Essential minerals
• Essential fatty acids
• Essential amino acids
• Phytonutrients
• Enzymes

Milk products have been fortified with vitamins since the 1930’s when an industry wide program for vitamin D fortification was initiated in an effort to prevent infantile rickets, a bone disease of children related to vitamin D deficiency. This practice, which was recommended by the American Medical Association’s Council on Foods and Nutrition, was credited as instrumental in the near eradication of this disease in the US and elsewhere during this period.
Fortification of milk

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