Alfalfa leaf extract (ALE) food supplement is listed on a positive list as safe for the intended use by the US Food and Drug Administration (Title 21 - revised April 1, 2001). In addition, it can be produced in a very cost effective way, i.e. $3. per year for a child
It was in 1975 in France that ALE was first discovered as having a nutritional composition fit for human consumption . In 1993 the Association for the Promotion of Leaf Extracts in Nutrition (APEF) was set up to validate the process of using chloroplast leaf extracts as nutritional supplements to combat chronic malnutrition. Cooperation with scientists from Reims University made it possible to conduct rigorous studies relating to the effectiveness and safety of ALE. Today APEF is present in more than 20 countries with more than 40 million daily doses already distributed i.e. 320 tons of extract in Africa and Latin America.
The recommended doses are 5 to 10 gr per day for children and 10 to 15 gr per day for adults (annual cost being on average $6 per person per year), it gives the following effects:
• Higher birth-weight for their children;
• An increased quantity of breast milk.
• Easing of the delicate period of weaning;
• Appetite returns, weight increases;
• Speeding up of growth;
• Reduction and rapid disappearance of diarrhoea;
• Effectiveness against marasmus and kwashiorkor;
• Better response to education.
• Regression or elimination of anaemia in 3 months in more than 70% of cases;
• Diminished incidence and duration of ailments associated with malnutrition (infections of the upper respiratory system, the skin and eyes);
• Rapid improvement in several aspects of the blood picture, especially in the levels of haemoglobin (Iron) and of retinol (Vitamin A);
• Better resistance to infections, e.g. Noma in children;
• Improved general condition in cases of serious infections: tuberculosis, AIDS, etc.
The organization of the Knights of Malta has supported this food supplement program and rigorously monitored the NGOs which distributed the extracts. After more than 10 years of research and development, ALE has a proven track record in combating malnutrition. Investment in local production is required to build manufacturing plants in areas affected by malnutrition in order to reach all sufferers, especially children