100 years of research and development


Nutrition Your Child
Needs For A Strong Foundation
For Learning
Early childhood is the most rapid period of mental and physicial development in a child’s life. Inadequate nutrition during this time can interfere with growth and may impact learning.1
Why are DHA/AA important?
DHA & AA are found in the brain & eye.2 The European Food Safety Authority recognizes that DHA contributes to brain development in children.3 However, data has shown that intake of DHA among children is low.4
Why is Lutein important?
Good vision is important for learning.5 Display screens of computers, electronic notebooks, smartphones and other digital devices emit significant amount of blue light. Blue light can cause lesions in the eye.6

Lutein may act in the eye as:7
Our bodies cannot synthesise lutein and we need to obtain it from our diets. Vegetables are the main source of dietary lutein.6

How much screen time does your child have in a day?

Screen time in Malaysian 2-year-olds Adapted from Suria J, Amar Singh HSS, et al, CRC MOH 2016 18
Why are Iron and Zinc important?
Leading cause of micronutrient deficiency
Plays an important rolein the body
Detrimental impact of deficiency
2nd cause of micronutrient deficiency9
Iron is a component of haemoglobin in red blood cells which carry oxigen to all part of the body10
Anaemia, impaired motor and cognitive development, low energy
3rd leading cause of micronutrient deficiency9
Zinc is essential for growth11
Weakened immune system, more frequent infections, stunting
Why are Vitamin d and
calcium important?
Insufficient vitamin D and calcium impact bone formation and growth.12 1 in 2 Malaysian children do not consume sufficient vitamin D and calcium. The low calcium and vitamin D intake among Malaysian children may be related to a reduction in milk consumption.13
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  1. United Nations Children’s Fund. Early childhood development: The key to a full and productive life. Available at https://www.unicef.org/dprk/ecd.pdf. Accessed on 20 August 2017.
  2. Uauy R, Hoffman DR, Peirano R, Birch DG, Birch EE. Essential fatty acids in visual and brain development. Lipids 2001;36(9):885-95.
  3. European Food Safety Authority Panel on Dietetic Products, Nutrition and Allergies. Scientific opinion on the substantiation of a health claim related to DHA and contribution to normal brain development pursuant to Article 14 of Regulation (EC) No 1924/2006. EFSA Journal. 2014;12(10):3840-48.
  4. Nurhidayah M, Suzana S, Mahadir A, et al. Validation of food frequency questionnaire in estimating docosahexanoic acids (DHA) intake among Malay primary school children. Mal J Nutr. 2016;22(2):233-243.
  5. American Academy of Pediatrics. Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics. Robert G Voight, Michelle M Macias, Scott M Myers, eds. 2011.
  6. Zimmer P, Hammond BRJr. Possible influences of lutein and zeaxanthin on the developing retina. Clin Opthalmol. 2007:1(1) 25-35.
  7. Alves-Rodrigues A, Shao A. The science behind lutein. Toxicol Lett. 2004;150:57–83.
  8. Suria J, Amar Singh HSS, et al. Screen time in Malaysian 2-year-olds. Clinical Research Centre, Perak, Ministry of Health Malaysia. 2016. Available at http://www.theborneopost.com/2016/08/10/screens-damaging-to-our-young-children/. Accessed on 20 August 2017.
  9. International Food Policy Research Institute, Concern Worldwide, Welthungerhilfe. 2014 Global Hunger Index. The challenge of hidden hunger. 2014.
  10. Rouault TA. How mammals acquire and distribute iron needed for oxygen-based metabolism. PLoS Biol. 2003;1(3):326-328.
  11. MacDonald RS. The role of zinc in growth and cell proliferation. J Nutr. 2000;130:1500S-1508S.
  12. Bueno AL, Czepielewski MA. The importance for growth of dietary intake of calcium and vitamin D. J Pediatr (Rio J). 2008;84(5):386-394.
  13. Poh BK, Ng BK, Siti Haslinda MD. Nutritional status and dietary intakes of children aged 6 months to 12 years: findings of the Nutrition Survey of Malaysian Children (SEANUTS Malaysia). Br J Nutr. 2013;110:S21–S35.

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