Iron supplement use among Danish pregnant women

Vibeke K. Knudsen, Harald S. Hansen, Lars Ovesen, Tina B. Mikkelsen, Sjurdur F. Olsen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

42 Citations (Scopus)


To evaluate compliance with the national recommendation on supplemental iron to all pregnant women in Denmark and to explore differences between compliers and non-compliers with respect to dietary habits and other lifestyle factors.

Intake of supplemental iron from pure iron supplements and from multivitamin and mineral preparations was estimated in mid-pregnancy.

Nationwide cohort study, the Danish National Birth Cohort (DNBC), comprising more than 100 000 women recruited in early pregnancy.

Information on diet and dietary supplements was available for 54 371 women. Of these, information on lifestyle factors was available for 50 902 women.

A high compliance with the recommendation was found, as approximately 77% of the women reported use of iron supplements during pregnancy. However, many of the compliers did not obtain the recommended doses of iron, which can partly be explained by the lack of iron preparations of appropriate doses available on the Danish market. Compliance with the recommendation was associated with age above 20 years, primiparity, body mass index < 30 kg m− 2, non-smoking and long education. No major differences were seen in dietary intake between compliers and non-compliers.

Overall, a high compliance rate was found among participants of the DNBC but a clarification on daily dose is needed, and more concern should be paid to vulnerable groups such as young, smoking women and women with no or short education.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1104-1110
Number of pages7
JournalPublic Health Nutrition
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - 2007


  • Former Faculty of Pharmaceutical Sciences
  • iron supplements
  • pregnancy
  • compliance
  • Danish National Birth Cohort


Dive into the research topics of 'Iron supplement use among Danish pregnant women'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this