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Mothers, babies need more vitamin D, say experts September 24, 2007

Posted by Dreamhealer in Diet.

vitamin dvitamin dvitamin dA new statement by the Canadian Paediatric Society says Canadian mothers and babies aren’t getting enough vitamin D.

The society is particularly concerned about the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in pregnant women, exclusively breastfed infants and northern aboriginal populations.

The society says a deficiency can pose serious dangers to the development of a fetus and infant, yet can be prevented through taking supplements. It says the focus isn’t just on preventing bone-disfiguring rickets these days, because vitamin D can also help protect babies against other illnesses in childhood and later in life.

Dr. John Godel, principal author of the statement, says current recommended levels of supplementation for pregnant and breastfeeding women may not be enough to ensure that babies get what they need.

The society recommends that pregnant and nursing mothers talk to their doctors about taking a supplement of 2,000 international units a day, especially during winter months, and that all babies who are exclusively breastfed receive a supplement of 400 international units a day.

Babies in the North, above 55 degrees latitude, should get twice that recommended amount from October to April.

The society’s statement also recommends that babies with dark skin, those who have limited exposure to the sun, or whose mothers are vitamin D deficient also get extra vitamin D during the winter, no matter where they live.


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