Nutrient Deficiencies In US, Measured By CDC

Second National Report On Biochemical Indicators Of Diet And Nutrition In The U.S. Population, 2012 Report, Centers For Disease Control and Prevention

That’s the Executive Summary. Here’s the full report.

And here’s a quick summary:

Figure 1. Prevalence estimates of nutrient deficiencies in U.S. persons, National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 2003–2006.

Not many of us are experiencing nutritional deficiencies. This graph is an estimate. Some details:

  • Children and adolescents were rarely deficient in vitamin B12 (< 1%), while older adults were more likely to be deficient (4%).
  • The likelihood of being vitamin B6 or B12 deficient was higher in persons 40 years and older.
  • Men were more likely to be vitamin C deficient (7%) compared to women (5%).
  • Non-Hispanic black (31%) and Mexican-American (12%) people were more likely to be vitamin D deficient compared to non-Hispanic white people (3%).

It isn’t just diet that can lead to a deficiency:

  • Pigmentation reduces vitamin D production in the skin; darker skin makes less vitamin D than lighter skin.
  • Vitamin C can be used up by smoking or exposure to air pollution.
  • Vitamin B12 is more difficult to absorb as we age.
  • Alcohol uses up B vitamins, especially B1 (thiamine).

Then again, sometimes it is diet, so I rummaged around NutritionData:

  • One orange supplies more than the RDA (60 mg) for vitamin C.
  • Good vegetarian sources of vitamin B6 are whole grains (bran and germ the highest), legumes (2 tablespoons peanut butter or 1/2 cup chick peas have about half the RDA of 1.3 mg), and lots of vegetables (like peppers, cabbage, spinach, etc.).
  • An ounce of almonds has about half the RDA (15 mg) for vitamin E.

2 thoughts on “Nutrient Deficiencies In US, Measured By CDC

  1. Pingback: What’s Going On With Vitamin B6? Colon Cancer? | Fanatic Cook

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