Dietary intakes of folic acid and methionine in early childhood are associated with body composition at school age
Background: Deficiency of vitamin B-6, vitamin B-12, folate, folic acid, or methionine may lead to dysregulation of DNA methylation, which might lead to disturbed energy and lipid metabolism. Objective: We aimed to explore whether intakes of vitamin B-6, vitamin B-12, folate, folic acid, and methionine at 1 y are associated with measures of growth and body composition at the age of 6 y. Methods: This study was performed in 2922 children participating in The Generation R Study, a population-based prospective cohort study. Dietary intakes of vitamins B-6 and B-12, folate, folic acid, and methionine were assessed at a median age of 12.9 mo by using a validated food-frequency questionnaire. At the age of 6 y, height and weight were measured, and body mass index (BMI; in kg/m<sup>2</sup>) was calculated. Body fat was measured with dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry, and body fat percentage and the ratio of android fat mass to gynoid fat mass (android:gynoid) were calculated. Results: In models adjusted for maternal and child characteristics, children with folic acid intakes in the highest tertile had a 0.16 SD score (SDS) lower weight (95% CI: -0.31, -0.02 SDS) and a 0.14 SDS lower BMI (95% CI: -0.26, -0.01 SDS) than children in the lowest tertile. Children with vitamin B-12 intakes in the highest tertile had a 0.13 SDS higher android:gynoid (95% CI: 0.00, 0.25 SDS) than children in the lowest tertile. In addition, children with intakes in the highest tertile of methionine had a 0.09 SDS higher BMI (95% CI: 0.01, 0.17) and a 0.12 SDS higher android:gynoid (95% CI: 0.02, 0.22) than children in the lowest tertile. Vitamin B-6 and folate intakes were not associated with any of the body composition outcomes measured. Conclusions: In this population of children, early high folic acid intakes were associated with a lower body weight and BMI at the age of 6 y. In contrast, early higher methionine intakes were associated with unfavorable body composition at the age of 6 y. Future studies should investigate long-term consequences of these outcomes on health.
|Keywords||Body composition, Children, Folic acid, Methionine, Vitamin B-12|
|Persistent URL||dx.doi.org/10.3945/jn.115.216283, hdl.handle.net/1765/88123|
|Journal||The Journal of Nutrition|
Braun, K.V.E, Voortman, R.G, Kiefte-de Jong, J.C, Jaddoe, V.W.V, Hofman, A, Franco, O.H, & van den Hooven, E.H. (2015). Dietary intakes of folic acid and methionine in early childhood are associated with body composition at school age. The Journal of Nutrition, 145(9), 2123–2129. doi:10.3945/jn.115.216283