Parliament

Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search

 

Launch Of Folate Awareness Day At New World

Launch Of Folate Awareness Day At Thorndon New World


Health Minister Annette King says excellent progress is being made in reducing the number of babies born in New Zealand with spina bifida, but a simple change in diet could make even more difference.

Folate, the natural form of a B vitamin, is known to reduce the risks of neural tube defects, such as spina bifida, but only when consumed in adequate quantities. Fortifying food with folate, and encouraging people – especially women planning to get pregnant – to eat these particular foods is a key to reducing the incidence of these defects.

Mrs King today launched New Zealand CCS Folate Awareness Day at Thorndon New World supermarket, where she went on a shopping expedition for folate-rich foods like leafy green vegetables, fruit, eggs, orange juice, legumes, grains and some breads and breakfast cereals.

She said it was encouraging to see that the number of babies being born in New Zealand with spina bifida continued to decrease. Of all the live births last year, 17 babies were born with this condition. "While this is still too many, it is an improvement on previous years."

Dietary intakes of folate in New Zealand remain lower than recommended, especially for women. Since 1993, all women considering pregnancy have been advised to take folic acid supplements for four weeks prior to and 12 weeks after conception, but such advice is limited by the fact that 50 percent of pregnancies in New Zealand are unplanned.

"Events like Folate Awareness Day are important to raise the profile of the benefits of folate, and emphasise the advantages of consuming foods fortified with folic acid."

Mrs King said a campaign to increase the amount of folic acid in foods such as bread had received support from all the major political parties in New Zealand. The logistics of fortifying flour would be considered by the Association of Bakers in November.

Mrs King has also had initial discussions with Australian Health Minister Dr Michael Wooldridge, who is interested in the New Zealand approach, and it may be possible in the future that the Australia New Zealand Food Authority develops a standard for folate enrichment.

Ends

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell: On Welcoming The Major Health Reforms

Usually “reform” of government agencies is a cost cutting exercise in disguise, but this morning’s revision of the health system looks totally different. These reforms amount to the biggest shake-up of the health system since the neo-liberal reforms of the early 1990s, which have now been completely reversed. Good. The main ingredients announced by Health Minister Andrew Little this morning have included the setting up of a new and truly independent Maori Health Authority... More>>

 

Government: Major Reforms Will Make Healthcare Accessible For All NZers

Putting a greater emphasis on primary healthcare and ensuring fairer access for all New Zealanders are two of the main drivers of health sector reforms announced today by Health Minister Andrew Little. “We are going to put the emphasis squarely ... More>>

ALSO:

Government: Border Exceptions Will See More Families Reunited

Hundreds more families who were separated by the border closure will be reunited under new border exceptions announced today, Immigration Minister Kris Faafoi said. More>>

ALSO:

National: Proposed Hate Speech Laws A Step Too Far

Reports of the Government’s proposed new hate speech laws go a step too far and risk sacrificing the freedoms New Zealanders enjoy, National’s Justice spokesperson Simon Bridges says. “The reforms are supposedly including protections to every ... More>>

ALSO:


PM Ardern And PM Morrison: Commencement Of Two-Way Quarantine-Free Travel Between Australia And New Zealand

Joint Statement by Prime Ministers Scott Morrison and Jacinda Ardern Commencement of two-way quarantine-free travel between Australia and New Zealand Today, Australia and New Zealand have fulfilled their commitment to establish two-way quarantine free ... More>>

Claire Breen: ACC’s Policy Of Not Covering Birth Injuries Is One More Sign The System Is Overdue For Reform

Claire Breen , University of Waikato Recent media coverage of women not being able to get treatment for birth injuries highlights yet another example of gender bias in healthcare in New Zealand. More>>

Police: Police Accept Findings Of IPCA Report Into Photographs Taken At Checkpoint

Police accept the findings of a report by the Independent Police Conduct Authority (IPCA) relating to photographs taken at a checkpoint in Northland. On November 16, 2019, Police set up a checkpoint down the road from a fight night event in Ruakaka ... More>>

ALSO:


 
 
 
 
 
 

LATEST HEADLINES

  • PARLIAMENT
  • POLITICS
  • REGIONAL
 
 

InfoPages News Channels