Document Detail

Zinc plus beta-carotene supplementation of pregnant women is superior to beta-carotene supplementation alone in improving vitamin A status in both mothers and infants.
MedLine Citation:
PMID:  15531679     Owner:  NLM     Status:  MEDLINE    
BACKGROUND: Deficiencies of vitamin A, iron, and zinc are prevalent in women and infants in developing countries. Supplementation during pregnancy can benefit mother and infant. OBJECTIVE: We examined whether supplementation during pregnancy with iron and folic acid plus beta-carotene or zinc or both improves the micronutrient status of mothers and infants postpartum. DESIGN: Pregnant women (n = 170) were supplemented daily only during pregnancy with beta-carotene (4.5 mg), zinc (30 mg), or both or placebo plus iron (30 mg) and folic acid (0.4 mg) in a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Micronutrient status was assessed 1 and 6 mo postpartum. RESULTS: Six months postpartum, plasma retinol concentrations were higher in the women who received zinc during pregnancy than in women who did not. Infants born to mothers supplemented with beta-carotene + zinc had higher plasma retinol concentrations, with the frequency of vitamin A deficiency reduced by >30% compared with the other 3 groups. Breast-milk beta-carotene concentrations were higher in all women supplemented with beta-carotene, but breast-milk retinol concentrations were higher only in women who received beta-carotene + zinc. Zinc concentrations did not differ among groups in mothers and infants. CONCLUSIONS: Zinc supplementation during pregnancy improved the vitamin A status of mothers and infants postpartum, which indicates a specific role of zinc in vitamin A metabolism. Addition of both beta-carotene and zinc to iron supplements during pregnancy could be effective in improving the vitamin A status of mothers and infants.
Marjoleine A Dijkhuizen; Frank T Wieringa; Clive E West; Muhilal
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Publication Detail:
Type:  Clinical Trial; Journal Article; Randomized Controlled Trial; Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't    
Journal Detail:
Title:  The American journal of clinical nutrition     Volume:  80     ISSN:  0002-9165     ISO Abbreviation:  Am. J. Clin. Nutr.     Publication Date:  2004 Nov 
Date Detail:
Created Date:  2004-11-08     Completed Date:  2004-12-07     Revised Date:  2006-11-15    
Medline Journal Info:
Nlm Unique ID:  0376027     Medline TA:  Am J Clin Nutr     Country:  United States    
Other Details:
Languages:  eng     Pagination:  1299-307     Citation Subset:  AIM; IM    
Division of Human Nutrition and Epidemiology, Wageningen University, Wageningen, Netherlands.
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MeSH Terms
Avitaminosis / drug therapy*,  prevention & control
Birth Weight
Body Mass Index
Double-Blind Method
Infant, Newborn
Milk, Human / chemistry
Nutritional Status
Vitamin A / blood,  metabolism,  therapeutic use*
Zinc / therapeutic use*
beta Carotene / therapeutic use*
Reg. No./Substance:
11103-57-4/Vitamin A; 7235-40-7/beta Carotene; 7440-66-6/Zinc

From MEDLINE®/PubMed®, a database of the U.S. National Library of Medicine

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