Relationship between intake and plasma concentrations of vitamin B12 and folate in 873 adults with a physically active lifestyle: a cross-sectional study

A.M. Baart*, M.G.J. Balvers, J.H.M. de Vries, D.S.M. ten Haaf, M.T.E. Hopman, J.M.T. Klein Gunnewiek

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

Abstract

Background: Vitamin B12 and folate function as co-factors in pathways used during physical activity. Physical activity may therefore increase vitamin requirements, leading to a risk of deficient plasma concentrations. We aimed to investigate the relationship between intake and plasma concentrations of vitamin B12 and folate in physically active adults, as well as identify other determinants of vitamin B12 and folate plasma concentrations. Methods: The study population consisted of 873 adults (528 men and 345 women), aged 19–78 years, who participated in a 4-day walking event. The relationship between intake and plasma concentrations of vitamin B12 and folate was assessed using correlation and linear regression analyses. In addition, potential other determinants (sex, age, body mass index, energy intake and physical activity) of vitamin plasma concentrations were investigated. Results: Significant positive correlations were observed between intake and plasma concentrations of vitamin B12 [Pearson’s correlation coefficient = 0.15; 95% confidence interval (CI) = 0.08–0.21] and folate (Pearson’s correlation coefficient = 0.18; 95% CI = 0.12–0.25). In addition to vitamin intake, sex, age and energy intake were also determinants of both vitamin B12 and folate plasma concentrations in multivariable regression models. Conclusions: The results suggest a positive association between intake and plasma concentrations for both vitamin B12 and folate in physically active people. By contrast to our hypothesis, physical activity was not a determinant of vitamin B12 and folate plasma concentrations. However, sex, age and energy intake were found to be determinants. Thus, when studying the relationship between intake and plasma concentrations of vitamin B12 or folate, these factors should be taken into account.
Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics
DOIs
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 21 Sep 2020

Keywords

  • folate
  • intake
  • physical activity
  • plasma concentrations
  • vitamin B12

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