Serum B12 and Dietary B12 Adequacy among Pregnant Indian Women in Mumbai, India.

Rati JANI, S Palekar , T Munipally , P Ghugre , Shobha Udipi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Vitamin B12 is an essential water-soluble nutrient, the deficiency of which has detrimental consequences for the pregnant woman and her growing fetus. This cross-sectional study examined the prevalence of vitamin B12 deficiency and dietary B12 adequacy among affluent and non-affluent pregnant mothers; explored lifestyle characteristics (socio-economic and dietary indicators) associated with serum and dietary B12; and investigated the relationship between serum and dietary B12, and pregnancy outcomes specifically gestational age and birth weight. Serum B12 was measured by chemiluminescent immunoassay in 150 pregnant Indian women from Mumbai. Dietary B12 was recorded using a 24-hours dietary recall. Only 12% of the women had serum vitamin B12 levels lower than the suggested cut-offs (<203 pg/ml). In contrast, majority (96.7%) of the participants had vitamin B12 intakes lower than the recommendations (1.2 ug/d) for pregnant women. Participants consuming non-vegetarian diets had significantly higher serum vitamin B12 concentrations than those consuming vegetarian diets (β= 0.20, p= 0.03). No significant association was observed between serum vitamin B12 and pregnancy outcomes. In contrast, higher dietary B12 intakes were associated with higher gestational age of the infants (β= 0.22, p=0.02), after controlling for covariates. No significant relationship was observed between dietary B12 intake and infants birth weight. In conclusion, the study indicated that almost all mothers had inadequate intakes of vitamin B12, which was associated with detrimental pregnancy outcome (gestational age). There is a need to develop strategies for improving the B12 intakes of pregnant Indian mothers.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-224
Number of pages17
JournalAsian Academic Research Journal of Social Science & Humanities
Issue number26
Publication statusPublished - 2014
Externally publishedYes


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