Maternal Intake of Vitamin D During Pregnancy and Risk of Advanced Beta Cell Autoimmunity and Type 1 Diabetes in Offspring

Diabetologia. 2010 Aug;53(8):1599-607. doi: 10.1007/s00125-010-1734-8. Epub 2010 Apr 6.


Aims/hypothesis: We evaluated the intake of vitamin D by pregnant Finnish women and examined associations between maternal intake of vitamin D and the development of advanced beta cell autoimmunity and type 1 diabetes in their offspring.

Methods: The research was carried out within the Diabetes Prediction and Prevention study (DIPP), which is a population-based birth cohort of infants at genetic risk of type 1 diabetes. Mothers of 3,723 infants born between 1997 and 2002 completed a validated 181-item food frequency questionnaire, which included questions on dietary supplements. The offspring were observed at 3 to 12 month intervals for the appearance of autoantibodies associated with type 1 diabetes and for the development of clinical type 1 diabetes.

Results: Maternal mean daily intake of vitamin D was 5.1 microg from food and 1.3 microg from supplements. The maternal intake of vitamin D, either from food or from supplements, was not associated with the risk of advanced beta cell autoimmunity/type 1 diabetes in offspring (HR [95% CI] for intake of vitamin D from food 1.25 [0.80-1.95], for vitamin D intake from supplements 1.05 [0.95-1.16]), or with the risk of type 1 diabetes alone (HR [95% CI] for intake of vitamin D from food 0.84 [0.41-1.72], for vitamin D intake from supplements 1.09 [0.99-1.20]).

Conclusions/interpretation: Maternal intake of vitamin D either from food or supplements during pregnancy is not associated with advanced beta cell autoimmunity/type 1 diabetes or with type 1 diabetes alone in Finnish offspring carrying increased genetic susceptibility to type 1 diabetes.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Autoantibodies / immunology*
  • Autoimmunity / immunology
  • Chi-Square Distribution
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / etiology
  • Diabetes Mellitus, Type 1 / immunology*
  • Dietary Supplements
  • Female
  • Finland
  • Humans
  • Infant
  • Insulin-Secreting Cells / immunology*
  • Maternal-Fetal Exchange*
  • Pregnancy
  • Proportional Hazards Models
  • Surveys and Questionnaires
  • Vitamin D / administration & dosage*
  • Vitamin D / immunology


  • Autoantibodies
  • Vitamin D