Vitamin D Supplementation During Pregnancy May Boost Infant Size, Growth
Many expectant mothers are vitamin D deficient, which may put their babies at risk, as fetuses are entirely reliant on their mothers for vitamin D. A recent study suggests that vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy may reduce the risk of infants being small for gestational age and may also improve growth during infancy.
For their analysis, researchers screened 728 potential studies and narrowed it down to 24 randomized controlled trials with a total of 5,405 participants. All of the studies researched the relationship between vitamin D supplementation and infant health. The main outcomes and measures were fetal or neonatal mortality, small for gestational age, congenital malformation, birth weight, and preterm birth.
Vitamin D supplementation during pregnancy was associated with a lower risk of small for gestational age without risk of congenital abnormality. Neonates with vitamin D supplementation had higher weight at birth, 3 months, 6 months, 9 months, and 12 months. In additiona, no negative side effects were seen with vitamin D supplementation.
Researchers from the University of Montreal and McGill University conducted the study. It was published on May 29, 2018, in JAMA Pediatrics.
Vitamin D can be found in milk, fortified cereals, fish, and eggs. Your body also processes vitamin D from the sun, but it becomes harder for our bodies to process it as we age. A high-quality vitamin D supplement is always a good option if you feel that you’re not getting enough through diet and sun.