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Volume 2011, Article ID 815194, 5 pages
Review Article

Iron-Fortified Drinking Water Studies for the Prevention of Children's Anemia in Developing Countries

1Department of Internal Medicine, Ribeirão Preto School of Medicine, University of São Paulo, Av Bandeirantes 3900, 14049-900 Ribeirao Preto, SP, Brazil
2Department of Pediatrics, Medical School Belo Horizonte, Av Professor Alfredo Balena 190, 30130-100 Belo Horizonte, MG, Brazil
3Department of Pediatrics, Ribeirão Preto School of Medicine, University of São Paulo, Av Costábile Romano 2201, 14096-900 Ribeirao Preto, SP, Brazil

Received 27 December 2010; Accepted 1 June 2011

Academic Editor: Fernando Ferreira Costa

Copyright © 2011 Jose E. Dutra-de-Oliveira et al. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Anemia and iron deficiency should receive special attention considering their high prevalence and serious consequences. For prevention, globally it is recommended to increase dietary iron intake, iron fortification of industrialized foods, and medical iron supplementation. Food fortification for the prevention of iron deficiency in developing countries should consider carriers locally available and consumed daily, requiring limited infrastructure and technology. Drinking water is the iron carrier we have been working for years for the prevention of iron deficiency and anemia in small children in Brazil. It was shown that studies with iron-fortified drinking water were proved to be effective on children's anemia prevention. Water is found everywhere, consumed daily by everyone may be easily fortified with simple technology, is low priced and was effective on the prevention of children's anemia. Fortification of drinking water with iron was locally implemented with the direct participation of the government and community. Government authorities, health personnel and population were part of the project and responsible for its community implementation. The mayor/municipality permitted and supported the proposal to supply it to children at their day-care centers. To keep the children drinking water iron fortified supply an officially authorized legislation was also approved.