callout background
Callout Image 1



Callout Image 2




Get started now - download the
Top 10 European diet secrets for free!!

« All Posts‹ PrevNext ›


Planning a Pregnancy? Check Your Vitamin D

Feb. 5, 2014|528 views

Planning a Pregnancy? Check Your Vitamin D

If you’re pregnant, or you are thinking about becoming pregnant soon, you may want to consider having your vitamin D levels checked. New research has linked low vitamin D levels with a significantly greater risk of preeclampsia and small-for-gestational-age births.
Preeclampsia is a potentially dangerous condition in which a pregnant woman’s blood pressure rises far higher than normal. Organs such as the kidneys and liver may be damaged by the condition. When it occurs before 32 weeks gestation, there’s an increased risk of death of the mother. High blood pressure and protein in the urine during pregnancy are signs of preeclampsia. The only known “cure” is delivery of the baby. It’s believed that the trouble arises when the mother’s immune system mistakenly mounts an attack against the placenta.
Vitamin D, the so-called “sunshine” vitamin, is actually a hormone known to play an important role in regulating the immune system. Recently published research suggests that it’s important to have adequate levels of vitamin D before and after conception, to avoid the risk of preeclampsia and having a low-birth-weight baby.

Women who had higher levels of vitamin D were about half as likely to deliver a low-birth-weight baby compared to women with the lowest levels of the hormone. For white women, high vitamin D levels translated to a 68% reduction in the risk of having a low-weight baby.
Although the link between vitamin D status and preeclampsia is still under investigation, several recent studies have concluded that women with the lowest levels of vitamin D are significantly more likely to be diagnosed with severe, potentially life-threatening preeclampsia. Given that there are no other known preventive measures, and it’s very easy both to have your levels measured, and to increase your levels, it may make sense to broach the subject with your doctor.

Vitamin D is generated through the action of sunlight striking bare skin in spring and summer. It’s also present in some fish, and in fortified dairy. Vitamin D3 is available as a supplement, too, but check with your doctor first before taking any supplements during pregnancy.
Baker AM, Haeri S, Camargo CA Jr, Espinola JA, Stuebe AM.A nested case-control study of midgestation vitamin D deficiency and risk of severe preeclampsia.J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2010 Nov;95(11):5105-9. doi: 10.1210/jc.2010-0996. Epub 2010 Aug 18.

Bodnar LM, Simhan HN, Catov JM, Roberts JM, Platt RW, Diesel JC, et al. Maternal Vitamin D Status and the Risk of Mild and Severe Preeclampsia.Epidemiology. 2014 Jan 22. [Epub ahead of print]

Gernand AD, Simhan HN, Caritis S, Bodnar LM.Maternal Vitamin D Status and Small-for-Gestational-Age Offspring in Women at High Risk for Preeclampsia.Obstet Gynecol. 2014 Jan;123(1):40-8. doi: 10.1097/AOG.0000000000000049.

Tags:  pregnancy, vitamin d