Purpose – The purpose of this study is to determine the effect of calcium supplementation on the iron bioavailability from spirulina (SP) and ferrous sulphate (FE) as reference in iron deficient rats. Design/methodology/approach – Sixty‐four weanling male Sprague‐Dawley rats were first depleted of iron by giving low iron diet for a period of 28 days. The anaemic rats were repleted with iron sources from SP, spirulina+CaCO3 (SPC), FE, FeSO4+CaCO3 (FEC), normal diet (ND), normal diet+CaCO3 (NDC) for 21 days. Iron level of FE supplementation was twice the level of that in SP supplementation. Haematological variables were measured on the last day of preexperimental period and at the end of the repletion period. Findings – Paired samples t ‐test at P <0.05 showed that haemoglobin (Hb) and haematocrit (Ht) was increased in all the groups. The diet with added calcium did not significantly inhibit haemoglobin repletion after 21 days in SP and FE. The haemoglobin repletion efficiency (HRE) was significantly higher in rats fed with SP compared to FE ( P >0.05). The presence of calcium did not significantly reduce the HRE of these groups. Originality/value – This paper provides information on effects of additional calcium on iron bioavailability from SP as the intake of dietary supplementation is increasing worldwide.
Nutrition & Food Science – Emerald Publishing
Published: Nov 1, 2006
Keywords: Diet; Nutrition
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