Micronutrient Supplementation

Group: Stanford Rural Education Action Program
Timeframe: 2013-2015年
A Randomized Controlled Trial (RCT) of a micronutrient supplementation program among babies in rural Shaanxi Province showed significant short-run improvement in child nutrition and developmental outcomes, but the impacts were not sustained and failed to resolve the majority of the anemia and developmental delays.

Research Design

Randomized Controlled Trial (RCT)

Study subjects: 6-18 month-old babies and their caregivers; 449 children

Outcome measures: Hemoglobin concentrations (measure of anemia); Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development Version III (Bayley-III); caregiver-reported child health measures

Project duration: 12 months


Caregivers in the treatment group were given a supply of micronutrient supplement packets (directly given to them within their homes, without needing to seek out the product themselves), and instructed to give them to their children daily.


Significant decrease in rate of anemia after 6 months of supplementation, but not thereafter

Significant increase in cognitive outcomes after 6 months, but not thereafter.


Micronutrient supplement packets were moderately effective, but not sufficient to resolve either the anemia or the developmental delays in the long-run

Low compliance: Many families in treatment group, did not give the packets to their children, or started to give the packets but then for some reason discontinued.


Luo, R., Yue, A., Zhou, H., Shi, Y., Zhang, L., Martorell, R., … & Sylvia, S. (2017). The effect of a micronutrient powder home fortification program on anemia and cognitive outcomes among young children in rural China: a cluster randomized trial. BMC public health17(1), 738.