Importance Minerals for Children and Pregnant Women

The Importance of Minerals for Children and Pregnant Women

In Myanmar, a significant number of children face deficiencies in key vitamins and minerals, including iodine and iron. This issue is prevalent not only in children but also in pregnant women. Let’s explore how iodine and iron can benefit to our bodies and what kind of foods can help prevent the deficiency of those minerals.


Iodine is crucial for brain development, body growth, and the normal functioning of various body parts. Deficiency in iodine can result in stillbirths and premature births in pregnant women, as well as a reduction in IQ levels in children and the birth of children with mobility difficulties.

To prevent iodine deficiency, it is essential for both mother and child to consume an adequate amount of iodine. Include iodized salt, seafood such as fishes, prawns, shrimp, seaweed in your diet.


Iron is essential for building red blood cells in human body. Red blood cells carry oxygen from the lungs to the entire body and transport impurities from the blood back to the lungs to be cleaned. Iron plays a key role in producing red blood cells, and deficiency can lead to anemia, decreased immunity, an increased chance of infection, and the risk of giving birth to a premature baby. Children with iron deficiency may experience slow development in the body and brain, difficulty in memorization, a weakened immune system, and increased susceptibility to infections.

Symptoms of iron deficiency include sickness, fatigue, dizziness, and loss of appetite. To prevent iron deficiency in children, include foods such as meat, beef liver, various fish, eggs, a variety of beans, and green vegetables in their diet.

For further information on essential vitamins for the body and foods rich in vitamins, click here to learn more.

Adapted from Basic nutrition workshop by UNCDF and IEC materials from LEARN.