As a pediatric chiropractor in Woodbury, MN, I address children’s nutrition every day in practice. That means I also address the nutritional needs of mom during her pregnancy. The deficiency of vitamin D has gained attention in recent years and is being studied more extensively. We know that adults should be supplementing with vitamin D daily, but what about infants? Are the needs of mothers different during pregnancy and how does that affect the baby?
These are important questions to answer if we are to offer mothers optimal prenatal nutrition while also taking care to ensure optimal nutrition for your children. Be sure to ask about your vitamin D level next time you are in.
In a recent 2015 issue of Pediatrics, it was reported that infants who are solely breast-fed are almost universally deficient in Vitamin D unless they receive oral vitamin D supplementation. Consequently, it is being recognized that human milk does not supply an adequate amount of vitamin D to meet the nutritional needs of the baby. Medical doctors then recommend that infants be given 400 IU of oral vitamin D daily.
What if we thought about it a different way, and looked at the source of the breast milk? It raises the possibility that it is the mothers who are deficient, then mom may pass this deficiency on to baby.
The study then looked at the effects of supplementing lactating moms with three doses of vitamin D, either 400, 2400, or 6400 IU of vitamin D3 per day. It was found that 6400 IU per day significantly increased vitamin D in moms in comparison with 400 IU per day. Babies who were exclusively breast-fed by moms who were supplementing at this level also had higher levels of vitamin D than babies who were given a supplement of 400 IU of vitamin D per day.
I strongly recommend all pregnant and nursing moms to be supplementing with this dose of vitamin D to prevent a host of complications associated with vitamin D deficiency. A few things associated with vitamin D deficiency are:
- muscle/joint pain
- autoimmune disorders
At Functional Health Unlimited, we recommend different types of vitamin D based on your individual needs. This can be determined by specific labs and the detailed history. Find out which one is right for you to keep you and your baby healthy by contacting me today!
Dr. Lori Jokinen, DC, CACCP, CFMP