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November 1985

Effect of Race and Diet on Human-Milk Vitamin D and 25-Hydroxyvitamin D

Author Affiliations

From the Division of Neonatology, Departments of Pediatrics (Drs Specker and Tsang) and Obstetrics and Gynecology (Dr Tsang), and the Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics (Dr Specker), University of Cincinnati College of Medicine; and the Department of Nutrition, Case Western Reserve University, Cleveland (Dr Hollis).

Am J Dis Child. 1985;139(11):1134-1137. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1985.02140130072032

• Vitamin D—deficiency rickets continues to be reported in infants fed human milk, and the importance of human milk as a source of vitamin D for infants is controversial. Furthermore, effects of race and of normally consumed maternal vitamin D intake on human-milk vitamin D have not been reported. Milk, serum, and three-day-diet diaries were obtained from 25 mother-infant pairs. Human-milk vitamins D3 and D2 and 25-hydroxyvitamin D3 were lower in blacks vs whites, whereas 25-hydroxyvitamin D2 did not differ. Total-milk vitamin D, but not 25-hydroxyvitamin D, correlated with vitamin D intake. Milk vitamin D2 specifically was correlated with vitamin D intake even after controlling for race. Infant serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D did not correlate with milk vitamin D or 25-hydroxyvitamin D; we speculate that the contribution of vitamin D from human milk in these infants is insignificant relative to the contribution from sunshine exposure.

(AJDC 1985;139:1134-1137)