Pregnant women advised to take vitamin D

By Shane Starling

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Pregnant women, Vitamin d deficiency, United kingdom

British researchers have concluded pregnant women should be advised to take vitamin D after determining there is a “strong case” to back the vitamin’s benefits.

The researchers from the University College London Institute of Child Health wrote in the British Journal of Nutrition ​that supplementation of vitamin D will benefit pregnant women and reduce the risk of diseases such as infantile hypocalcaemia and rickets.

They said the UK was the only country in 31 that did not officially recommend vitamin D use women of reproductive age, even though the Department of Health advises pregnant women to take 10 micrograms per day.

But that advice is contradicted by the National Institute of Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) which advises against supplements use – even though 10 micrograms is not usually attainable via a regular diet and sunshine.

The paper said the UK was the only one of 31 countries examined which did not recommend that women of reproductive age took a vitamin D supplement.

"The incidence of vitamin D deficiency in pregnant women in Britain is unacceptably high, especially during winter and spring,”​ said Dr Elina Hypponen, one of the report authors.

"This is compounded by a lack of exposure to sunlight and the limitations of an average diet to meet the optimal need. In the most severe cases, maternal vitamin D deficiency can be life threatening to a newborn.”

"We believe that the routine provision of a daily supplement throughout pregnancy would significantly decrease the number of mothers who are clearly vitamin D deficient, reducing related serious risks to their babies."

The research also highlighted the problem of women with dark skin who do not absorb as much sunlight and therefore manufacture less vitamin D in vivo.

Source: British Journal of Nutrition

Published online ahead of print doi:10.1017/S0007114510002436

“Avoidance of vitamin D deficiency in pregnancy in the United Kingdom: the case for a unified approach in National policy”

Authors: Elina Hyppönen and Barbara J. Boucher

Related news

Show more

Related products

show more

Pycnogenol® Provides Benefits for Men Managing ED

Pycnogenol® Provides Benefits for Men Managing ED

Horphag Research | 17-Feb-2020 | Clinical Study

Newly published research shows daily supplementation with Pycnogenol® can strengthen erectile function and address common conditions related to type 2...

HRB are ideal probiotics for human health

HRB are ideal probiotics for human health

Morinaga Milk Industry Co., Ltd. | 13-Jan-2020 | Technical / White Paper

Evidence is accumulated that the physiological benefits of probiotics bifidobacteria are not only strain-specific but also dependent on their residential...

Vitamins & Minerals as Nature intended

Vitamins & Minerals as Nature intended

LEHVOSS Nutrition | 12-Dec-2019 | Data Sheet

LEHVOSS Nutrition offer a range of natural, organic certified, vegan and active vitamins and minerals. These are offered as “whole-food complexes” in their...

Related suppliers

Follow us

Featured Events

View more

Products

View more

Webinars