Vitamin D for nursing moms may serve as a good natural remedy for babies

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Sep 1 2016 - 7:35am

It has been observed in new research from the University of Otago the vitamin D status of babies may be improved when breastfeeding moms are given monthly high-dose vitamin D supplements.

Vitamin D supplements

The nutritional status of nursing mothers may have a profound effect on the well being of their babies. The vitamins and other nutrients mothers consume can be passed along to their babies.

High dose vitamin D supplements for nursing mothers may benefit their babies

Increasing the vitamin D levels in nursing mothers may benefit the well being of their babies reports the University of Otago. Monthly high dose vitamin D supplements may serve as a natural remedy to improve the vitamin D status of the babies of mothers who are breastfeeding according to new research.

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Vitamin D is very important for the healthy development of babies. This vitamin is essential for calcium and bone metabolism and is primarily obtained from being exposed to sunlight. Food and breast milk have just low levels of vitamin D. Vitamin D deficiency can lead to rickets which is a serious bone disorder. Being exclusively breastfed is a risk factor for vitamin D deficiency.

Many countries have been recommending giving daily vitamin D supplements to babies while they are being breastfed according to study co-author Dr Ben Wheeler. However this advice has often been ignored. Dr. Wheeler and his associates therefore wanted to determine if giving mothers a monthly high-dose vitamin D supplement could offer an alternative way to help babies get the necessary levels of vitamin D.

The numbers of kids worldwide with vitamin D deficiency has been increasing

In the study in mothers who took 2.5mg of vitamin D daily the improvement in vitamin D status in babies overall appeared to offer some protection against moderate to severe deficiency.This finding is significant for the well being of babies particularly in view of growing concerns across the world that the number of kids who are suffering from vitamin D deficiency has been increasing.

This research has been published in the Journal of Nutrition. Compliance has often remained poor with recommendations by countries for daily infant vitamin D supplementation during breastfeeding. A good alternative strategy appears to be a monthly, high-dose maternal regimen of vitamin D supplements. Further studies will be needed to determine the optimum dose and frequency of vitamin D for breastfeeding mothers. In the meantime the potential value of vitamin D supplements for nursing mothers to serve as a natural remedy for their children remains compelling.

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