Dietary intake of choline and neural tube defects in Mexican Americans. Academic Article uri icon


  • BACKGROUND: Low maternal intake of dietary choline and betaine (a choline derivative) has recently been investigated as a possible risk factor for neural tube defects (NTDs). METHODS: This case-control study examined the NTD risk associated with choline and betaine in 409 Mexican-American women who gave birth during 1995 to 2000 in the 14-county border region of Texas. RESULTS: Using data from the food frequency questionnaire and the lowest quartiles of intake as the reference categories, a protective association was suggested between higher intakes of choline and betaine and NTD risk although the 95% confidence intervals for all risk estimates included 1.0. For choline intake in the second, third, and fourth quartiles, adjusted odds ratios were 1.2, 0.80, and 0.89, respectively. Betaine appeared more protective with odds ratios of 0.62, 0.73, and 0.61, respectively, for the second, third, and fourth quartiles of intake. CONCLUSION: Study findings suggest that dietary betaine may help to prevent NTDs.

published proceedings

  • Birth Defects Res A Clin Mol Teratol

altmetric score

  • 0.25

author list (cited authors)

  • Lavery, A. M., Brender, J. D., Zhao, H., Sweeney, A., Felkner, M., Suarez, L., & Canfield, M. A

citation count

  • 12

complete list of authors

  • Lavery, Amy M||Brender, Jean D||Zhao, Hongwei||Sweeney, Anne||Felkner, Marilyn||Suarez, Lucina||Canfield, Mark A

publication date

  • March 2014