Vitamin D Supplementation During Pregnancy Helps Protect Babies Against Asthma

3b2f0462-43ab-4eaf-abbe-62ba227aed14articleimage.jpg

30 May 2017 --- Taking vitamin D supplements during pregnancy can positively modify the immune system of the newborn baby, according to a study published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology. A boost to the immune system could help protect the child against asthma and respiratory infections, a known risk factor for developing asthma in childhood.

The researchers from King's College London studied how taking a supplement of 4,400 IU vitamin D3 per day during the second and third trimesters of pregnancy, versus the recommended daily intake (RDI) of 400 IU/day, influenced the immune system of the newborn.

Participants were randomized at 10-18 weeks of pregnancy to high or low doses of vitamin D supplements. The team studied umbilical cord blood from 51 pregnant women to test the responsiveness of the newborn's innate immune system, which forms the body's first line of defense to infection, and T lymphocyte responses, which provide longer-lasting protection.

Blood samples from babies born to mothers supplemented with higher vitamin D3 were found to respond to mimics of pathogen stimulation by greater innate cytokine responses and greater IL-17A production in response to T lymphocyte stimulation. Both types of response are predicted to improve the neonatal defense to infection.

The team believes the effect will likely lead to improved respiratory health in childhood because strong immune responses in early life have been linked to decreased development of asthma.

“The majority of all asthma cases are diagnosed in early childhood implying that the origin of the disease stems in fetal and early life,” says lead researcher, Professor Catherine Hawrylowicz from King's College London.

“Studies to date that have investigated links between vitamin D and immunity in the baby have been observational. For the first time, we have shown that higher Vitamin D levels in pregnancy can effectively alter the immune response of the newborn baby, which could help to protect the child from developing asthma. Future studies should look at the long-term impact on the immunity of the infant.”

“Vitamin D is a promising area of research for asthma. However, this study is just the first step of many needed to explore this topic. Although this study shows that vitamin D supplementation in pregnancy may improve immune responses, much more research is needed to prove whether this does, in fact, lead to reduced asthma rates later in life,” says Dr. Samantha Walker, Director of Research and Policy at Asthma UK.

Vitamin D is produced by the body through exposure to the sunshine or obtained from foods such as fatty fish and egg yolk, and helps the body control calcium and phosphate levels. Vitamin D levels have been linked to a range of health issues including cardiovascular disease and cancer. A recent study on vitamin D and male fertility has suggested that vitamin D has an effect on many aspects of fertility in both genders, including influencing production and maturation of sperm cells in men, egg cell and uterine lining maturation in women, and sex hormone production in both sexes.

To contact our editorial team please email us at editorial@cnsmedia.com

Related Articles

Nutrition & Health News

Plasma Nutrition technology found to significantly boost bioavailability of whey protein

21 Jun 2018 --- A University of South Florida study has found that Plasma Nutrition’s Ingredient Optimized technology can make whey protein more bioavailable than high DH hydrolyzed whey protein. The research was conducted on a double-blinded randomized cohort in a crossover design and compared the effects of 25g of non-hydrolyzed ioProtein whey protein isolate (WPI) to 25g of a high-DH hydrolyzed whey protein. The results show that ioWhey Protein is more bioavailable than hydrolyzed whey protein, demonstrating a 58 percent increase in leucine absorption and 60 percent increase in BCAA absorption.

Nutrition & Health News

More than a flavor: Flavoring substances stimulate immune defenses, study finds

21 Jun 2018 --- Not only do citric acid and spicy 6-gingerol from ginger add special flavors to food and beverages; both substances also stimulate the molecular defenses in human saliva, researchers from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) and the Leibniz-Institute for Food Systems Biology have found. The findings demonstrate the potential of flavor substances to have properties that go beyond the sensory.

Nutrition & Health News

Zero proof that probiotics can ease your anxiety, research reveals

21 Jun 2018 --- Those hoping to alleviate their anxiety with the use of probiotics should probably put down that yogurt spoon or supplement bottle and call a professional instead. This is according to researchers from the University of Kansas who reviewed available research, finding evidence that probiotics can reduce anxiety in rodents, but not in humans. The researchers reviewed data from 22 preclinical studies involving 743 animals and 14 clinical studies of 1,527 individuals, and found that probiotics did “not significantly reduce symptoms of anxiety in humans and did not differentially affect clinical and healthy human samples.”

Nutrition & Health News

Infant nutrition (part 2): Innovations in feeding the first 1,000 days

20 Jun 2018 --- Although breast milk is the most nutritious and advisable way to feed an infant for the first six months of life, as advised by the World Health Organization, there are situations that necessitate good quality breast milk substitutes. Part one of this two-part series on infant nutrition focused on the R&D challenges facing formula manufacturers. This second section focuses on the innovations in the ever-evolving market of Breast Milk Substitutes (BMS), as shared by a range of suppliers, as well as a look at the upcoming trends.

Nutrition & Health News

In your blood: Blood sample could uncover whether a person is following their prescribed diet

20 Jun 2018 --- Clinical trials of diets and their health impacts are often plagued by participants’ poor adherence to assigned diets, making it difficult to detect the true effects of those diets. An analysis of small molecules called “metabolites” in a blood sample may be used to determine whether a person is following a prescribed diet, scientists at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health have shown. The new approach, described in a paper in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, could provide an objective and relatively easy-to-obtain measure of dietary adherence, potentially greatly reducing the uncertainty of dietary intake estimates.

More Articles
URL : http://www.nutritioninsight.com:80/news/vitamin-d-supplementation-during-pregnancy-helps-protect-babies-against-asthma.html