Folate and vitamin B12 status of a multiethnic adult population

Subrata D. Nath, Samer Koutoubi, Fatma G. Huffman

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Scopus citations


Background: Folic acid and vitamin B12 are of particular interest for their diverse biological functions and preventive roles in many prevalent chronic diseases. However, ethnic differences on the status of these vitamins have not been investigated among multiethnic adult college students. Methods: A cross-sectional study (n=177) was conducted to determine the dietary intakes and levels of serum concentrations of folate and vitamin B12 among triethnic college students-non-Hispanic white, Hispanic and non-Hispanic black. Dietary intake was assessed using a validated food frequency questionnaire, and serum was analyzed for folate and vitamin B12 using standardized methods. Results: Mean intakes of both vitamins without supplementation was higher (P<0.05) among non-Hispanic white mates than females, and non-Hispanic white and non-Hispanic black males and females. Non-Hispanic white females had a significantly lower mean dietary intake of vitamin B12 than the females of other ethnic groups (P〈0.01). There was a positive correlation between B12 intake and serum concentrations. More than 52% of the females did not meet the required folate intake of 400 μg/day. Conclusions: The data suggest that there was no difference in overall mean intake of folate and vitamin B12 or serum concentrations in regard to gender or ethnicity. One-fourth of the female subjects failed to meet the recommended folate intake when supplement was excluded.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)67-72
Number of pages6
JournalJournal of the National Medical Association
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2006
Externally publishedYes


  • Adults
  • Bitamin B
  • Folate
  • Minorities

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine(all)


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