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Title: Chili, but not turmeric, inhibits iron absorption in young women from an iron-fortified composite meal
Authors: Siriporn Tuntipopipat
Kunchit Judprasong
Christophe Zeder
Emorn Wasantwisut
Pattanee Winichagoon
Somsri Charoenkiatkul
Richard Hurrell
Thomas Walczyk
Mahidol University
Institute of Food Science and Nutrition
Keywords: Medicine;Nursing
Issue Date: 1-Dec-2006
Citation: Journal of Nutrition. Vol.136, No.12 (2006), 2970-2974
Abstract: Chili and turmeric are common spices in indigenous diets in tropical regions. Being rich in phenolic compounds, they would be expected to bind iron (Fe)3 in the intestine and inhibit Fe absorption in humans. Three experiments were conducted in healthy young women (n = 10/study) to assess the effect of chili and turmeric on Fe absorption from a rice-based meal containing vegetables and iron fortified fish sauce in vivo. Iron absorption was determined by erythrocyte incorporation of stable isotope labels (57Fe/ 58Fe) using a randomized crossover design. Addition of freeze-dried chili (4.2 g dry powder, 25 mg polyphenols as gallic acid equivalents) reduced Fe absorption from the meal by 38% (6.0% with chili vs. 9.7% without chili, P = 0.0017). Turmeric (0.5 g dry powder, 50 mg polyphenols as gallic acid equivalents) did not inhibit iron absorption (P = 0.91). A possible effect of chili on gastric acid secretion was indirectly assessed by comparing Fe absorption from acid soluble [57Fe]-ferric pyrophosphate relative to water soluble [58Fe]-ferrous sulfate from the same meal in the presence and absence of chili. Chili did not enhance gastric acid secretion. Relative Fe bioavailability of ferric pyrophosphate was 5.4% in presence of chili and 6.4% in absence of chili (P = 0.47). Despite the much higher amount of phenolics in the turmeric meal, it did not affect iron absorption. We conclude that both phenol quality and quantity determine the inhibitory effect of phenolic compounds on iron absorption. © 2006 American Society for Nutrition.
ISSN: 15416100
Appears in Collections:Scopus 2006-2010

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