Iron supplementation – adherence to the national recommendation. A cross-sectional study with data from the Copenhagen Pregnancy Cohort.

​A cross-sectional study which assesses adherence to the Danish recommendation on iron supplementation during pregnancy

A research project by Cand.scient.san student, Midwife Line Brams Løvschal

Estimates the prevalence of women who follow the Danish recommendation on iron supplementation during pregnancy. Describes differences in relation to reproductive and obstetric history and sociodemographic characteristics in iron users and non-users, and aims to identify pre-pregnancy lifestyle predictors for adherence to the recommendation.

Background:
Iron is a micronutrient of significant importance as it is a vital element in the production of blood formation as well as being the oxygen-binding part of hemoglobin. In pregnancy the physiological demand for iron doubles during the second and third trimester due to the expanding maternal blood volume, the development of the placenta, fetal growth and the expected blood loss during delivery. Women with low iron stores at conception or women who do not meet the nutritional iron demand during pregnancy are in increased risk of developing iron deficiency or iron deficiency anemia. Previous studies have identified maternal age, education, employment status, parity, degree of pregnancy planning, use of other food supplements and Body Mass Index as influencing factors on adherence to iron supplementation during pregnancy. It is important to illuminate risk factors and evaluate whether pregnant women in Denmark follow the national recommendation in order to strengthen preconception as well as pregnancy counselling.

Aim:
The aims of the study were 1) to estimate the prevalence of women who follow the Danish recommendation on iron supplementation during pregnancy, 2) to describe differences in relation to reproductive and obstetric history and sociodemographic characteristics in iron users and non-users, and 3) to identify pre-pregnancy lifestyle predictors for adherence to the Danish recommendation on iron supplementation during pregnancy.



Responsible editor