Association of vitamin D intake and serum levels with fertility: results from the Lifestyle and Fertility Study

Women with vitamin D intake below recommendations and inadequate or deficient serum 25(OH)D levels may be less likely to conceive. The relationships between vitamin D and clinical pregnancy are presented.

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Volume 108, Issue 2, Pages 302–311

Authors:

June L. Fung, Ph.D., Terryl J. Hartman, Ph.D., Rosemary L. Schleicher, Ph.D., Marlene B. Goldman, Sc.D.

Abstract:

Objective

To evaluate the role of vitamin D intake and serum levels on conception of clinical pregnancy and live birth.

Design

Prospective cohort study.

Setting

Academic medical centers.

Patient(s)

Healthy, nulliparous women, age 18–39 years, and their male partners.

Intervention(s)

None.

Main Outcome Measure(s)

Clinical pregnancy and live birth were compared between those who did or did not meet the vitamin D estimated average requirement (EAR) intake (10 μg/d) and with serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) considered at risk for inadequacy or deficiency (<50 nmol/L) or sufficient (≥50 nmol/L).

Result(s)

Among 132 women, 37.1% did not meet the vitamin D EAR and 13.9% had serum levels at risk for inadequacy or deficiency. Clinical pregnancies were significantly higher among women who met the vitamin D EAR (67.5% vs. 49.0%) and with sufficient serum 25(OH)D (64.3% vs. 38.9%) compared with those who did not. Live births were higher among those who met the vitamin D EAR (59.0% vs. 40.0%). The adjusted odds ratio (AOR) of conceiving a clinical pregnancy was significantly higher among those who met the EAR (AOR = 2.26; 95% confidence interval [CI], 1.05–4.86) and had sufficient serum 25(OH)D (AOR = 3.37; 95% CI, 1.06–10.70). The associations were not significant after controlling for selected nutrients and dietary quality.

Conclusion(s)

Women with vitamin D intake below EAR and serum 25(OH)D levels at risk for inadequacy or deficiency may be less likely to conceive and might benefit from increased vitamin D intake to achieve adequacy.

Clinical Trial Registration Number

NCT00642590.


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Fertility and Sterility

Editorial Office, American Society for Reproductive Medicine

Fertility and Sterility® is an international journal for obstetricians, gynecologists, reproductive endocrinologists, urologists, basic scientists and others who treat and investigate problems of infertility and human reproductive disorders. The journal publishes juried original scientific articles in clinical and laboratory research relevant to reproductive endocrinology, urology, andrology, physiology, immunology, genetics, contraception, and menopause. Fertility and Sterility® encourages and supports meaningful basic and clinical research, and facilitates and promotes excellence in professional education, in the field of reproductive medicine.

1 Comment

Go to the profile of Jason Franasiak
Jason Franasiak over 3 years ago

Thank you Dr. Fung et. al. for furthering our understanding of vitamin D and its role in reproduction. This is a very nice prospective cohort study which further shows the importance of vitamin D, either having a direct role in or being an important indicator of success in ART. Although the study was not designed to address this, it does further the discussion of whether Vitamin D has a direct hormonal role in folliculogenesis and/or endometrial receptivity or if it is a marker of more global general health and thus more of a surrogate marker for another process which impacts fertility. Given the data from your study and the body of literature to date, do you have any comments which might support one hypothesis over the other?