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J Perinat Med. 2007;35(2):108-14.

Fortified mineral water improves folate status and decreases plasma homocysteine concentration in pregnant women.

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  • 1Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, University of Oulu, Oulu, Finland.



There is no mandatory folic acid fortification of food in Finland. We investigated the effects of mineral water fortified with folic acid, vitamins B6, B12, D and calcium on serum and erythrocyte folate concentrations, serum vitamin B12 and plasma homocysteine concentrations in pregnancy.


A randomized, controlled, double-blind, parallel-group intervention study.


Seventy-four pregnant women were recruited from two health care units. The study began at the eleventh week with a two-week run-in period, followed by an eight-week intervention period. The diet was monitored by food records. During the intervention, subjects consumed 1000 mL/day fortified or normal mineral water. The pregnancies were monitored carefully.


The folate intake was 255 microg/day in the study group and 274 microg/day in the controls. Serum folate concentrations increased in the study group by 10.3 nmol/L and decreased in the controls by 2.7 nmol/L (P<0.05) during the study. The erythrocyte folate concentrations increased in the study group by 360.9 nmol/L and in the controls by 195.6 nmol/L (P=0.004) and serum homocysteine concentrations fell by 1.1 micromol/L and by 0.3 micromol/L, respectively (P<0.05).


Finnish pregnant women have low dietary folate intake. Fortified mineral water improved folate status and reduced plasma homocysteine concentrations in the pregnant subjects.

[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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