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Pregnant? You Need A Sunshine Boost

Making sure you get enough vitamin D in pregnancy is important for your baby’s muscle strength and potentially their lifelong health, according to new research

Making sure you get enough vitamin D in pregnancy is important for your baby’s muscle strength and potentially their lifelong health, according to new research

Getting all the nutrients needed to build a strong baby is top of the task list for all mums-to-be and it seems that taking a daily supplement of vitamin D, known as the sunshine vitamin, is especially important.

And now researchers have for the first time shown that low vitamin D levels in pregnancy leads to a weaker muscle grip in children.

For the study, 678 women had their vitamin D levels measured in pregnancy. The team at the University of Southampton then followed up when the babies were four years old to see how tightly they could grip a device.

Results showed that the higher the level of vitamin D in the mother, the stronger the child’s grip. Muscle mass was also found to be higher in children born to mothers with higher vitamin D levels in pregnancy.

Lead researcher Dr Nicholas Harvey said, ‘It is likely that the greater muscle strength observed at four years of age in children born to mothers with higher vitamin D levels will track into adulthood and so potentially help to reduce the burden of illness associated with loss of muscle mass in old age.

As well as muscle strength, vitamin D is important for the growth of your baby’s teeth and bone strength. Plus, a healthy dose of vitamin D has been linked with a healthy mood for you, too.

So what do you need to do? Rather than rush outside as soon as there’s a break in the clouds, make sure you’re following NHS advice to take a 10 microgram supplement of vitamin D every day of pregnancy and if you breastfeed.

Check out how you can get the most from your antenatal supplements.

 What supplements do you take in pregnancy? Let us know in the comments box below.

 

 
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