Biological Trace Element Research

, Volume 154, Issue 1, pp 7–13 | Cite as

The Relationship Between Maternal Serum Iron and Zinc Levels and Their Nutritional Intakes in Early Pregnancy with Gestational Diabetes

  • Samira Behboudi-Gandevani
  • Kolsum Safary
  • Lida Moghaddam-BanaemEmail author
  • Minoor Lamyian
  • Azita Goshtasbi
  • Narges Alian-Moghaddam


The aim of this study was to investigate the association between maternal iron/zinc serum levels and their nutritional intake in early pregnancy with gestational diabetes. The maternal serum zinc/iron levels were measured in 1,033 healthy singleton pregnant women aged 20–35 between 14 and 20 weeks of gestation, within two groups: namely, normal and gestational diabetes, and participants were followed up to 24–28 weeks of gestation. Food frequency questionnaire was used to assess nutritional intakes of iron/zinc. The main outcome was gestational diabetes screened with the 50-g glucose challenge test and diagnosed with oral glucose tolerance test at 24–28 weeks of gestation. Gestational diabetes occurred in 72 (6.96 %) of 1,033 women in study. There was a statistical relationship between early pregnancy maternal serum iron and gestational diabetes, mean (SD), 143.8 (48.7) vs. 112.5 (83.5) μg/dl, P value of <0.0001. There was no statistical significant difference in zinc levels and iron/zinc nutritional intake between groups. The results remained unchanged after using regression model for adjustment of potential risk factors with an adjusted OR of 1.006 (95 % CI 1.002 to 1.009; P = 0.001) for early pregnancy maternal serum iron to cause gestational diabetes. The receiver–operator characteristic curve identified that a maternal serum iron above 100 μg/dl in early pregnancy is the optimum cutoff value for predicting gestational diabetes, which showed a sensitivity and specificity of 80.6 and 50.7 %, respectively. In conclusion, high maternal serum iron in early pregnancy could increase the risk of gestational diabetes. Also, it could be used as a sensitive and specific predictor for gestational diabetes.


Maternal serum Zinc Iron Nutritional intake Gestational diabetes 



The research was financially supported by the Tarbiat Modares University. The authors would like to thank all the participants for their sincere cooperation in the study. We also thank Dr. Mojtaba Vaismorsdi, Faculty of Professional Studies, University of Nordland, Norway, for editing the article and providing feedbacks on the study.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media New York 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Samira Behboudi-Gandevani
    • 1
    • 2
  • Kolsum Safary
    • 1
  • Lida Moghaddam-Banaem
    • 1
    Email author
  • Minoor Lamyian
    • 1
  • Azita Goshtasbi
    • 3
  • Narges Alian-Moghaddam
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Midwifery and Reproductive Health, Faculty of Medical SciencesTarbiat Modares UniversityTehranIslamic Republic of Iran
  2. 2.Research Institute for Endocrine Science, Shahid Beheshti University of Medical Sciences, Research Institute for Endocrine ScienceTehranIslamic Republic of Iran
  3. 3.Department of Family HealthIranian Institute for Health Sciences Research, Health Metrics Research CenterTehranIslamic Republic of Iran

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