Thursday, November 28, 2013
Following a request from the European Commission, the EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies (NDA) was asked to deliver a Scientific Opinion on the nutrient requirements and dietary intakes of infants and young children in the European Union. The Panel assessed the levels of nutrient and energy intakes that are considered adequate for the majority of infants and young children living in Europe and evaluated the risk of inadequate nutrient intakes in this population. Finally, the Panel was asked to assess the potential role of young-child formulae in the diets of infants and young children, considering their nutritional needs.
Opinion: Based on the available publications reporting on nutrient intakes in infants and young children living in Europe, the Panel stated that:
• Dietary intakes of alpha-linolenic acid (ALA), docosahexaenoic acid (DHA), iron, vitamin D and iodine are low, and particular attention should be paid to ensure an appropriate supply in these nutrients for infants with inadequate or at risk of inadequate status.
• Regarding the provision of these critical nutrients in the diet of infants and young children living in Europe, the Panel did not consider young-child formulae as a necessity to satisfy their nutritional requirements when compared to other foods that may be included in a normal diet.
Conclusion: The Panel provided advice on the levels of nutrients which it considers adequate for healthy, term, normal-weight infants and young children, but does not derive any Dietary Reference Values (DRVs). Despite the Panel underlined the risk of inadequate status in ALA, DHA, iron, vitamin D and iodine, it didn't consider young-child formulae as a unique way to supply these nutritional requirements.
EFSA NDA Panel (EFSA Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies), 2013. Scientific Opinion on nutrient requirements and dietary intakes of infants and young children in the European Union. EFSA Journal 2013; 11 (10):3408, 103pp. doi:10.2903/j.efsa.2013.3408
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