Effect of Oral Vitamin D3 Supplementation in Exclusively Breastfed Newborns: Prospective, Randomized, Double-Blind, Placebo-Controlled Trial

Chao Hsu Lin, Chien Yu Lin, Yi Hsiang Sung, Sung Tse Li, Bi Wen Cheng, Shun Long Weng, Shing Jyh Chang, Hung Chang Lee, Yann Jinn Lee, Wei Hsin Ting, Hung Yang Chang, Yi Lei Wu, Chih Sheng Lin*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

3 Scopus citations


Exclusively breastfed infants are at a high risk of vitamin D deficiency. Few studies have evaluated the effects of vitamin D supplementation. Hence, we conducted a prospective randomized controlled trial investigating the effects of oral vitamin D3 400 IU/d supplementation in exclusively breastfed newborns. Serum 25-hydroxy-vitamin D (25[OH]D) levels in pregnant women and their newborns were evaluated. Breastfed newborns were randomized to one of two regimens at age 10 days. One group received vitamin D3 supplementation at a dose of 400 IU/d (vD-400 group), whereas the placebo group received a liquid product without vitamin D3. Outcomes were assessed at 4 months of age. A total of 92 pregnant women and their infants were enrolled, and the data of 72 infants (37 in the vD-400 group and 35 in the placebo group) who completed the study at 4 months of age were assessed. The results showed severe vitamin D deficiency in 15.2% of mothers before delivery, while 54.3% had vitamin D deficiency. Moreover, 15.2% of newborns presented with severe vitamin D deficiency at birth, while 52.2% had vitamin D deficiency. Maternal vitamin D levels were significantly correlated with infant vitamin D levels at birth (r = 0.816, p < 0.001). At 4 months of age, weight, head circumference, serum 25(OH)D, phosphorus, and intact parathyroid hormone levels significantly differed between the vD-400 and placebo groups. However, the body length and bone mineral density of the two groups did not differ significantly. Regardless of vitamin D supplementation, participants with severe vitamin D deficiency had significantly higher intact parathyroid hormone levels and lower bone mineral content. In conclusion, among exclusively breastfed infants, oral supplementation with vitamin D3 at a dose of 400 IU/d from age 10 days increased 25(OH)D concentrations at 4 months of age, but it did not affect bone mineralization.

Original languageEnglish
JournalJournal of Bone and Mineral Research
StateAccepted/In press - 2022


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