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Racial/ethnic and sociodemographic factors associated with micronutrient intakes and inadequacies among pregnant women in an urban US population

  • Kelly J Brunst (a1), Robert O Wright (a1) (a2) (a3), Kimberly DiGioia (a4), Michelle Bosquet Enlow (a5) (a6), Harriet Fernandez (a4), Rosalind J Wright (a1) (a2) (a3) and Srimathi Kannan (a7)...
Abstract Objective

To assess sociodemographic correlates of micronutrient intakes from food and dietary supplements in an urban, ethnically diverse sample of pregnant women in the USA.


Cross-sectional analyses of data collected using a validated semi-quantitative FFQ. Associations between racial, ethnic and sociodemographic factors and micronutrient intakes were examined using logistic regression controlling for pre-pregnancy BMI, maternal age and smoking status.


Prenatal clinics, Boston, MA, USA.


Analyses included pregnant women (n 274) in the PRogramming of Intergenerational Stress Mechanisms (PRISM) study, an urban longitudinal cohort designed to examine how stress influences respiratory health in children when controlling for other environmental exposures (chemical stressors, nutrition).


High frequencies of vitamin E (52 %), Mg (38 %), Fe (57 %) and vitamin D (77 %) inadequacies as well as suboptimal intakes of choline (95 %) and K (99 %) were observed. Factors associated with multiple antioxidant inadequacies included being Hispanic or African American, lower education and self-reported economic-related food insecurity. Hispanics had a higher prevalence of multiple methyl-nutrient inadequacies compared with African Americans; both had suboptimal betaine intakes and higher odds for vitamin B6 and Fe inadequacies compared with Caucasians. Nearly all women (98 %) reported Na intakes above the tolerable upper limit; excessive intakes of Mg (35 %), folate (37 %) and niacin (38 %) were also observed. Women reporting excessive intakes of these nutrients were more likely Caucasian or Hispanic, more highly educated, US-born and did not report food insecurity.


Racial/ethnic and other sociodemographic factors should be considered when tailoring periconceptional dietary interventions for urban ethnic women in the USA.

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