Deficiency Disorders Of Riboflavin

ID-100200046The daily recommended requirement of riboflavin is 0.6 mg per 1000 Kcal of energy intake. If a person is consuming 3000 Kcal of energy per day he/she will require approximately 1.8 mg of riboflavin per day. There is no body store of riboflavin and it has to be consumed daily to prevent deficiency disorders of riboflavin. Vitamin-health is incomplete without recommended intake of riboflavin every day.

Deficiency of riboflavin:

The deficiency of riboflavin is known as “ariboflavinosis”. Deficiency of riboflavin is common in many areas of the world. It is more common, especially in the developing countries where rice is the staple food. The reason is, riboflavin is destroyed during cooking of rice as riboflavin is a water soluble vitamin. Ariboflavinosis is sometimes used as an index of malnutrition (state of nutrition) during clinical survey of malnutrition.

The most common symptom associated with riboflavin deficiency is angular stomatitis (inflammation of angle of the mouth) and this occurs frequently among malnourished children (so used as index of malnutrition in malnutrition surveys). Other clinical signs of riboflavin deficiency are glossitis, nasolabial deformity etc. But these are not specific signs of riboflavin deficiency, unlike angular stomatitis.

In many under developed countries the sub-clinical deficiency of riboflavin (hypo riboflavinosis) is present in as many as 80% of the children among lower income groups. Sub clinical riboflavin deficiency is determined by a test known as “erythrocyte glutathione reductase activation test”. Hyporiboflavinosis do not incapacitate the child even if it is very severe, but it can cause many problems of function, especially neurological functions like impaired neuromotor function, impaired wound healing and increased susceptibility to develop cataract (possibly).

Deficiency of riboflavin generally occurs along with deficiency of other B-complex group of vitamins and presents as a part of multiple vitamin deficiency syndrome. But fortunately deficiency of riboflavin is becoming uncommon even in developing countries due to diversification of diet.


“Image courtesy of David Castillo Dominici /”.


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