Effect of Zinc on Appetite and Growth in Primary Malnourished Egyptian Children
Authors: Ehab K. Emam*; Mohamed T. Hamza**; Marian G. Rizk* and Zaki A. Z. Emara
Background: Zinc (Zn) is an essential trace mineral necessary for the proper functioning of multiple aspects of metabolism. Body weight regulation is based on the ability of the brain, particularly the hypothalamus, to integrate behavioral, endocrine, and autonomic responses. Leptin is a hormone made by fat cells which regulates the amount of fat stored in the body
Objective:. To determine the effect of Zinc supplementation on serum levels of Leptin and Zinc and growth in primary malnourished Egyptian infants and children. To assess the effect of zinc supplementation on Appetite and growth in primary malnourished Egyptian infants and children.
Subjects & Methods: We conducted our prospective randomized case-control clinical trial on 40 primary malnourished Egyptian children aged between 2 to 6 years old following up at the pediatric nutrition clinic, Ain Shams University hospitals. These children were classified to two groups, Patients in group A were on a daily supplementation of oral zinc sulfate syrup 20 mg/day, to be taken during or after food without other medication for months, with strict regular follow-up of zinc intake while Patients in group B were received placebo.
Results: We found that serum zinc level is low and serum level of leptin hormone is high in both case and control group before administration of zinc. Also zinc supplementation highly increases appitite through CEBQ in the test group in comparison to control group. Moreover, zinc supplementation increases the anthropometric measures and positively affects growth in the test group in comparison to control group. A highly significant increase of serum zinc level in the test group after zinc supplementation in comparison to control group. We found a highly significant decrease in the serum level of leptin hormone in the test group after zinc supplementation in comparison to control group.
Conclusion: Daily 20 mg Zinc supplementation for 3 months in primary malnourished Egyptian children ageing from 2-6 years positively affects growth (weight, height and body mass index) and appetite (CEBQ). Also, in these patients serum Zinc level is low and increases after supplementation and serum level of leptin hormone is high and declines after supplementation.