Tuesday May 21, 2019

Vitamin D supplementation for Pregnant Women should be Tailor-made, suggests Research

The skin naturally produces vitamin D after exposure to sunlight but people also obtain smaller amounts of the vitamin through foods, such as milk fortified with vitamin D

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Pregnant woman. Flickr

London, October 28, 2016: Pregnant women respond differently to vitamin D supplementation depending on their individual attributes, thus the supplement levels should be tailored according to individual risk factors, suggests a research.

Vitamin D is a hormone that helps the body to absorb calcium. It plays a crucial role in bone and muscle health.

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The skin naturally produces vitamin D after exposure to sunlight but people also obtain smaller amounts of the vitamin through foods, such as milk fortified with vitamin D.

The findings showed that women who delivered in the summer season, who gained less weight during pregnancy and who had higher vitamin D levels early in pregnancy tended to have higher levels of vitamin D in the blood than their counterparts.

On the other hand, vitamin D supplements were found less effective at raising the levels of the vitamin in pregnant women who delivered their babies in the winter season, have low levels of vitamin D early in pregnancy or gain more weight during pregnancy.

Women who consistently took the supplement also had higher levels of vitamin D than participants who did not, the researchers said.

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“Our study findings suggest that in order to optimise vitamin D concentrations through pregnancy, the supplemental dose given may need to be tailored to a woman’s individual circumstances, such as the anticipated season of delivery,” said Nicholas Harvey, Professor at University of Southampton in Britain.

Evidence suggests vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy can harm maternal health, foetal development and the child’s long-term skeletal health.

“It is important for pregnant women to have sufficient levels of vitamin D for the health of their baby,” Harvey added.

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For the study, the team recruited and randomised more than 800 pregnant women to take either 1,000 units (25 micrograms) of vitamin D every day or a matched placebo capsule from 14 week’s gestation until delivery of the baby.

Analysis showed that participants who received the vitamin D supplement achieved different levels of vitamin D in the blood, even though they received the same dose.

The study was published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism. (IANS)

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Researchers Claim, Men Aged 45 And Older Can Experience Decreased Fertility

Infants born to older fathers were found to be at higher risk of premature birth, late still birth, low birth weight, higher incidence of newborn seizures and birth defects such as congenital heart disease and cleft palate.

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Bachmann attributes most of these outcomes to a natural decline in testosterone that occurs with ageing, as well as sperm degradation and poorer semen quality. Pixabay

Men who delay starting a family have a ticking “biological clock” — just like women — that may affect the health of their partners and children, according to the researchers.

Men who delay fatherhood should consult their doctor and consider banking sperm before age 35, said the study which reviewed 40 years of research on the effect of parental age on fertility, pregnancy and the health of children.

“While it is widely accepted that physiological changes that occur in women after 35 can affect conception, pregnancy and the health of the child, most men do not realize their advanced age can have a similar impact,” said Gloria Bachmann, Director of the Women’s Health Institute at Rutgers University’s Robert Wood Johnson Medical School.

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“For example, just as people lose muscle strength, flexibility and endurance with age, in men, sperm also tends to lose ‘fitness’ over the life cycle,” she said.Pixabay

The study, published in the journal Maturitas, found that men aged 45 and older can experience decreased fertility and put their partners at risk for increased pregnancy complications such as gestational diabetes, preeclampsia and preterm birth.

Infants born to older fathers were found to be at higher risk of premature birth, late still birth, low birth weight, higher incidence of newborn seizures and birth defects such as congenital heart disease and cleft palate.

As they matured, these children were found to have an increased likelihood of childhood cancers, psychiatric and cognitive disorders, and autism.

Bachmann attributes most of these outcomes to a natural decline in testosterone that occurs with ageing, as well as sperm degradation and poorer semen quality.

“For example, just as people lose muscle strength, flexibility and endurance with age, in men, sperm also tends to lose ‘fitness’ over the life cycle,” she said.

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As they matured, these children were found to have an increased likelihood of childhood cancers, psychiatric and cognitive disorders, and autism. Pixabay

The study also found that older men struggled with fertility issues even if their partner was under 25.

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“While women tend to be more aware and educated than men about their reproductive health, most men do not consult with physicians unless they have a medical or fertility issue,” Bachmann said.

She recommended that physicians counsel older men as they do older women on the effect their age will have on conception, pregnancy and the health of their child. (IANS)