Vitamin D: How it affects Pregnancy?

That Vitamin D is crucial for our overall health is a well-known medical fact. By supplying and regulating the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body, Vitamin D maintains optimum growth, development, metabolic functions, immune system, bone health and mental health.

Because of its vitality, Vitamin D is currently in the scope of research in many fields of medicine, including its positive impact on fertility. This also makes it crucial for expecting mothers in India to pay more attention to Vitamin D deficiency. This is primarily because due to a combined effect of dietary inadequacy and less exposure to sun, nearly 76% of India’s population suffers from Vitamin D deficiency, a study published in May 2020 showed. The study included 4,624 subjects at 229 sites across 81 cities in India.

 

The Co-relation between Vitamin D and fertility

 

A diet that ensures Vitamin D sufficiency can yield positive results for women trying to conceive through natural as well as artificial reproductive technologies, studies conducted on the subject show.  Clinical research has proven women with Vitamin D sufficiency are more likely to get pregnant than women suffering from its deficiency.

In a study published in 2017 in the Human Reproduction journal, Researchers from the University of Birmingham found that women with correct levels of Vitamin D were 34% more likely to have a positive pregnancy test, 46% more likely to achieve a clinical pregnancy and a third more likely to have a live birth than women with low levels of Vitamin D. Moreover, Vitamin D is also quite crucial during and after the pregnancy.

Some other studies have shown that Vitamin D, aka the sunshine vitamin, improves your egg quality, thereby improving your chances of conceiving. On the other hand, women with deficiency are more prone to suffering low AMH, PCOS and uterine fibroids.

While preparing an expecting mother’s body for conceiving, Vitamin D also supports the healthy bone and teeth development of the child during the pregnancy. Lactating mother continues to be the main source of Vitamin D for their infant.

Not only female fertility, but the sunshine vitamin also has an impact on male fertility, too. A study conducted by the European Society of Endocrinology indicated that Vitamin D can impact a man’s testosterone level and the quality of his sperm.

Even as more studies further examine the value and merits of Vitamin D and how it affects fertility, its positive impact in relation to pregnancy and the overall health of expecting mothers and the upcoming baby are firmly established.

 

Vitamin D: Quick facts

 

 What is Vitamin D?

 Vitamin D is a steroid vitamin from a group of fat-soluble prohormones. Its most significant compounds for human development are Vitamin D2 and Vitamin D3.

 How much Vitamin D do I need in a day?

 The recommended daily Vitamin D intake for adults is 600 international units (IU). It is up to 800 IU daily for those older 70 years. 

Symptoms of Vitamin D deficiency

  • Hair Loss
  • Poor heath
  • Depression
  • Cuts that take a while to heal
  • Persistent fatigue
  • Stomach issues
  • Back pain
  • Brittle bones
  • Muscle pain

Sources of Vitamin D

  1. Direct sunlight on the skin
  2. Salmon
  3. Sardines
  4. Herring
  5. Mackerel
  6. Red meat
  7. Liver
  8. Egg yolks
  9. Fat spreads
  10. Breakfast cereals
  11. Vitamin D supplements

Who is at risk of having a Vitamin D deficiency?

Vegetarian diet

Vegan diet

People with darker skin

Obesity

Kidney disease

Liver disease

Anemia

Malabsorption

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