Martin Mwangi, postdoc researcher at the Division of Human Nutrition, was awarded the research award on the Foundation Day of the university. The jury appreciated his broadly set up nutrition study that was performed under difficult circumstances.
Photo: Jan Harryvan
Mwangi is currently doing research into the uptake of iron and zinc from edible insects in children in Kenya. He wants to find out whether insects enrich the Kenyan children’s diet and diminish malnutrition. His research project is a collaboration between WUR’s Division of Human Nutrition and chair group Entomology.
The jury awarded the prize for his scientific article on the importance of iron supplementation in the nutrition of pregnant women in Kenya. In his article, Mwangi proves that the supplementation of iron during the women’s pregnancies leads to an increased birth weight of the infants. In addition, the iron supplementation leads to an increased iron retention in the new-borns, as a result of which the new-borns had lower chances to incur iron deficiency. This also leads to a diminished chance for chronic diseases and restricted growth during their later life, argues Mwangi.
This strong relation between ferriferous nutrition and health opens many possibilities to improve the health of both mothers and children alike, the jury observed. Moreover, Mwangi’s article was well written and highly accessible.