Dietary intake of the water-soluble vitamins B1, B2, B6, B12 and C in 10 countries in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Objectives: To describe the intake of vitamins thiamine (B1), riboflavin (B2), B6 (pyridoxine), B12 (cobalamine) and C (ascorbic acid) and their food sources among 27 centres in 10 countries participating in the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC) study. Methods: Between 1995 and 2000, 36 034 persons aged between 35 and 74 years were administered a standardized 24-h dietary recall using a computerized interview software programme (EPIC-SOFT). Intakes of the four B vitamins and vitamin C were estimated using the standardized EPIC Nutrient Database (ENDB). Mean intakes were adjusted for age and weighted by season and day of recall. Results: Intake of B vitamins did not vary considerably between centres, except in the UK health-conscious cohort, in which substantially higher intakes of thiamine and lower intakes of vitamin B12 were reported compared with other centres. Overall, meat was the most important contributor to the B vitamins in all centres except in the UK health-conscious group. Vitamin C showed a clear geographical gradient, with higher intakes in the southern centres as compared with the northern ones; this was more pronounced in men than in women. Vegetables and fruits were major contributors to vitamin C in all centres, but juices and potatoes were also important sources in the northern centres. Conclusions: This study showed no major differences across centres in the mean intakes of B vitamins (thiamine, riboflavin, B6, B12), whereas a tendency towards a north-south gradient was observed for vitamin C. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition (2009) 63, S122-S149; doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2009.78


  • A. Olsen
  • J. Halkjaer
  • C. H. van Gils
  • B. Buijsse
  • H. Verhagen
  • M. Jenab
  • M. C. Boutron-Ruault
  • M. C. Ocke
  • P. H. M. Peeters
  • M. Touvier
  • M. Niravong
  • M. Waaseth
  • G. Skeie
  • K. T. Khaw
  • R. Travis
  • P. Ferrari
  • M. J. Sanchez
  • A. Agudo
  • K. Overvad
  • J. Linseisen
  • C. Weikert
  • C. Sacerdote
  • A. Evangelista
  • D. Zylis
  • K. Tsiotas
  • B. van Guelpen
  • E. Riboli
  • N. Slimani
  • S. Bingham
Research areas and keywords

Subject classification (UKÄ) – MANDATORY

  • Nutrition and Dietetics


  • ENDB, standardization, water-soluble vitamins, 24-h dietary recall, EPIC, Europe
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S122-S149
JournalEuropean Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Issue number4s
Publication statusPublished - 2009
Publication categoryResearch