The objective is to investigate the effect of some diet elements modification on iron
deficiency anemia (IDA) patients. A total of 213 patients (68.1% females and 31.9% males) aged (15-
50 years) were used in this study. They were examined clinically and blood samples taken and sent for
complete blood count (CBC) and iron profile plus renal, liver function tests and stool for routine
examination, after they filled a prepared questionnaire for their diet habit and type of nutrients in their
main meals. All enrolled persons were fulfilled the criteria of IDA based on hemoglobin (Hb) levels,
MCV, MCHC and iron profile (TIBC, S. iron and S. ferritin). Patients had IDA due to chronic blood
loss or other chronic diseases were excluded. Hb less than 7 gm/dL reported in 22.5% of patients (11
male, 37 female), Hb between 7-10 gm/dL reported in 77.5% of patients (57 male, 108 female). The
highest prevalence of IDA found between 22-39 years of age. Hb mean was 7.9 ± 0.08 before diet
modification. After diet modification, the mean Hb was 12.9 ± 0.06 (p < 0.0001). Hb changes had the
same pattern with the statistical significant (p < 0.0001) in both sexes. MCV increased significantly
after diet modification (68.4 ± 0.3 to 82 ± 0.2, with p ≤ 0.0001). TIBC decreased significantly from
(549.6 ± 0.4 to 296 ± 0.2) (p < 0.0001). Total serum iron increased from 27.3 ± 0.4 to 95.4 ± 2.1 (p <
0.0001). Serum ferritin increased significantly from 5.1 ± 2.4 to 8.7 ± 0.7 (p < 0.001). Knowing food
nutrients contents of meals is important while they have a significant effect on IDA prevention and
treatment. Therefore, reducing or completely avoiding those nutrients will reduce IDA risk and cut
health care costs. Legalizations and educational programs must be done to population and food-health
careers to prevent IDA due to malnutrition.

Keywords: Iron deficiency, anemia, diet, Libya, phytate, hemoglobin


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