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Link found between pregnancy obesity and baby’s vitamin D levels

Photo: Eurweb

Photo: Eurweb

Many pregnant women have taken up different endeavours to avoid the unwanted weight gain during the nine months; they have taken to exercise, pregnancy yoga, walking, swimming, name it. However, some are not of this view and go ahead to eat for two, having the leeway given by a pregnancy. Whichever category a woman finds herself they need to take caution because research has shown that obesity during pregnancy does not only affect the mother and her ability to get back to her pre-baby body.

Results from a study published in PLOS ONE (Public Library of Science) provide ample evidence that a newborn’s vitamin D level relates to the mother’s weight during pregnancy. Higher body mass index (BMI) in mothers is associated with lower vitamin D levels in their babies. This is a concern, since low vitamin D at birth may be associated with reduced bone mineral density in the long term, as well as increased risk of allergic disease and obesity.

The researches noted that:

“Our study suggests that overweight or obesity in pregnancy is linked to lower vitamin D levels in both the mother and the newborn,” said Jami Josefson, MD, endocrinologist at Ann & Robert H. Lurie Children’s Hospital of Chicago and assistant professor at Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine. “More research is needed, however, before we can make broad recommendations about the need for greater supplementation of vitamin D for overweight pregnant women.”

This research gives more weight to the pregnancy exercise and fitness campaign. Obesity in pregnancy has become increasingly common and in addition to lower vitamin D levels, it has been associated with heavier infants who then are at a higher risk for childhood obesity and type 2 diabetes.

Keeping fit through pregnancy will be a plus for the mother through the labour process and help her bounce back after pregnancy but it will also help the baby be healthy. Do it for you; do it for baby.


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