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Published By: K.D Cameron
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New research out of India suggests that daily Vitamin D supplementation is a good idea for healthy moms and babies.

Vitamin D is often called “the sunshine vitamin” because it is produced in the body when we are exposed to natural sunlight. As a fat-soluble vitamin, Vitamin D was once thought to be problematic if consumed at high levels. But a body of new evidence has changed the thinking, with experts around the world calling for revised guidelines that call for increases in daily recommendations.

Now scientists in India have found that providing Vitamin D supplements either to nursing mothers or directly to infants is associated with improved health outcomes for both mom and baby. Intake of 3,000 mcg of Vitamin D per month by the mother was found to be equivalent to direct administration of 10 mcg to nursing infants.

Note: Vitamin D supplements are measured in IUs. One IU of cholecalciferol (the supplemental form of Vitamin D) is equal to 0.025 mcg.

Writing in the British Journal of Nutrition, the researchers note that Vitamin D deficiency is common in India despite the warm, sunny climate. In fact, some studies have found that up to 96% of mothers and infants at birth and at three months are Vitamin D deficient.

The study was designed to assess the impact of sun exposure, maternal supplementation and direct infant supplementation in a double-blind, placebo-controlled trial. Both supplementation strategies proved to be more effective than sun exposure alone, and both produced measureable improvement in relevant biological indices.

If you’re a nursing mother, consider adding a Vitamin D supplement to your daily wellness regimen. If you live in a northern climate with limited sunshine, it’s even more important. But as the latest study demonstrates, even those in the brightest climates can do well with a little boost of the sunshine vitamin.

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