Latest News » Study shows the sunshine vitamin could be a must for expectant mothers

Pregnant women may benefit from this vitamin.

Previously on this blog, we mentioned that this time of year can be particularly brutal for brain health, as shorter days and a notable lack of holiday cheer leave many Americans feeling a bit down in the dumps. One purely chemical reason for this is that sunlight is an essential source of vitamin D, which has been linked to mood and also helps facilitate the absorption of calcium.

In fact, it isn’t uncommon for physicians to recommend a vitamin D supplement for patients who have noticed a slump in their overall state of mind. Now, the results of a new study from the University of Southampton have provided yet another reason for expectant mothers in particular to seek out this nutrient.

According to a university press release, researchers have found that expectant mothers who consume higher levels of vitamin D when pregnant are more likely to give birth to children with greater overall muscle strength. This was deduced by measuring the grip strength and muscle mass of these infants at four years of age.

“These associations between maternal vitamin D and offspring muscle strength may well have consequences for later health,” said Dr. Nicholas Harvey, a senior researcher on the project. “It is likely that the greater muscle strength observed at four years of age […] will track into adulthood, and so potentially help to reduce the burden of illness associated with loss of muscle mass in old age.”

Mothers-to-be have to be especially proactive about the nutrients they consume every day to ensure the healthy development of their little ones. Consult a physician to make sure you aren’t missing out on any essential nutrition for the mind and body.