pregnant

What Month Were You Born?

There is an article in Mercola.com that talks of the importance of Vitamin D for your baby.  It also covers the subject of how a baby’s birth month affects how healthy that child will be.  Now the scientists are saying that babies who are born between October and November have a greater likelihood of being autistic or dyslexic.  According to the US Center for Disease Control and Prevention the US has about 1 in 68 children with some form of autism spectrum disorder (ASD).  More than 800,000 children were studied and researchers at Cambridge and Glasgow universities found that 8.9% of those conceived between January and March had learning disabilities like autism and dyslexia compared with 7.6% of those conceived between July and September.  Women should follow the advice to take vitamin D supplements and start them as early in pregnancy as possible.

Scientists and health professionals are all urging mothers to use higher doses of vitamin D supplementation.  Gordon Smith, Ph.D, Cambridge University professor and head of the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology, agreed “widespread compliance with the advice would lead to loss of this variation, and would have a downward effect on overall rates of special educational needs.”

Experiences of diminished sunlight hours during the winter months leaves chances for absorbing vitamin D from the sun less than in the summer.  The Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association reported in a 2015 study, involving 2 million people, found a link between birth month and 55 different diseases.  May birth babies had the lowest risk of disease, and those born in October and November had the highest.  Asthma is one of the diseases that studies have linked with low vitamin D levels, according to scientists at University of Pittsburgh Medical Center Children’s Hospital.  They are studying the effectiveness of vitamin D as an inexpensive over-the-counter alternative to the inhalers asthmatics use.  The participants will be tracked for a year.

Rickets, a disease that causes bone softening and subsequent breaks, tenderness in large bones, muscle craps and skeletal deformities, is back on the list of resurging diseases in developed countries.  In 2012 in the U.K., there were an estimated 833 hospital admissions for rickets.  This was quadruple the number from just 10 years earlier.  In the States, parents of children with multiple broken bones that can’t explain why, are sometimes suspected of child abuse.  Even though people with diseases like cancer are more prevalent with low D levels, adequate intake lowers cancer risk as well as other diseases.

Sunlight is a good source of vitamin D.  In the wintertime there are three ways to up your vitamin D intake:

  1. Get out in the sun when it’s high in the sky, from 11 am. To 4 p.m. This is the best way to get the most benefit, but only for periods of five to 15 minutes and without sunscreen.
  2. Foods with the most vitamin D include wild-caught Alaskan salmon, organic eggs, organic raw milk, organic liver and mushrooms that have been exposed to sunlight.
  3. Supplement with vitamin D, but you need to know how much you need.

As you can see, Vitamin D is very important for our bodies. However, it is very important to get blood work to see where your blood level of Vitamin D is. Vitamin D is considered a “Fat soluble” vitamin. This means that too much vitamin D supplementation can become toxic to the liver.

If you are supplementing, please do not do it blindly. Check with your doctor and get a simple blood test to be safe. It may save your liver and your life.

–Dr Fredda Branyon

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