Effect of low phytate soy formula on zinc and copper absorption

B. Lonnerdal, I. Lymvickmil, E. I. Lien

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Soy formulas (SFs) are commonly used for infants with milk allergy or lactose intolerance. Although SF has been designed to meet all nutrient requirements of infants, soy also contains phytate, which may have a negative effect on trace element absorption. We evaluated the effect of removing phytate on Zn and Cu absorption. Suckling rat pups were used to evaluate short term uptake of Zn and Cu Fasted 14 d old rat pups were given regular SF, low phytate (LP)-SF, LP-SF with hydroryzed protein (LPH-SF), cow milk formula (MF) or MF with added phytate (60 or 300 mg/L). Zn absorption was lowest from SF (51.1%) and highest from MF (91.2%). Phyttte removal increased Zn absorption to 78.2% (LP-SF); there was no difference from LPH-SF (72.8%). Addition of phytate to MF at a level similar to LP-SF decreased Zn absorption to 80.2%, and at SF levels to 50.3%. Cu absorption was not affected by either phytate or protein hydrolysis. Infant rhesus monkeys were fed SF or LP-SF from birth to 5 mo of age. Plasma Zn was higher in SF-LP monkeys than in SF monkeys, while plasma Cu was lower. Whole body absorption of "Zn and67Cu was also assessed in infant monkeys. At 10 d of age, Zn absorption was higher from SF-LP (36%) than from SF (22%). There was no difference in Cu absorption (67 vj.70%). These results show that lowering the phytate content of SF has a positive effect on Zn absorption, but no or possibly a negative effect on Cu status.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalFASEB Journal
Issue number3
StatePublished - 1996

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Agricultural and Biological Sciences (miscellaneous)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Biochemistry
  • Cell Biology


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