NUTRITION: Loss of vitamins poses risk

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The Independent Online
A dramatic fall in consumption of vitamins and minerals since 1980 is threatening the health of Britain's poorest families, nutrition experts said yesterday. In the past decade vitamin C intake by the poorest fifth of families in the UK had dropped by 23 per cent, the experts said in a letter to the British Medical Journal. Beta carotene intake had fallen by 47 per cent. Parents regularly went hungry to ensure their children were fed or to pay bills.

The letter was submitted by Suzi Leather, a consultant with the National Food Alliance, and Elizabeth Dowler, nutrition lecturer at the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. The experts wrote: "Hunger and inadequate food intakes are not confined to developing countries. Poor people in Britain have also experienced a decline in food security over the past decade."