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Micronutrients & birth weight

This article was originally published in The Tan Sheet

Executive Summary

Antenatal folic acid/iron supplements increased mean birth weight by 37 g and "reduced the percentage of low birth rate babies (<2,500 g) from 43% to 34%," Parul Christian, Johns Hopkins University, et al., report in the March 15 British Medical Journal. Double-blind, placebo-controlled study examined 4,962 pregnant women and their live born infants in Nepal; participants were randomized to receive daily regimens of either folic acid, folic acid/iron, folic acid/iron/zinc, a micronutrient combination or vitamin A as a control. Christian et al. found "multiple micronutrients confer no additional benefit over folic acid/iron in reducing" risk of low birth rate, and none of the supplement combinations reduced the incidence of preterm births...
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