In the recent study on mice researchers found that Intake of Vitamin D supplement during the first trimester of pregnancy prevents the development of autism traits in new born children.
What is Autism?
Autism spectrum disorder — is a lifelong developmental disabilities including difficulty or inability to communicate with others and interact socially. Parents usually notice signs in the first two years of their child’s life.
The discovery provides us further evidence of the crucial role of Vitamin D plays in brain development, said lead researcher Darryl Eyles, Professor at University of Queensland.
Moreover, recent studies also shows a link between pregnant women with low Vitamin D levels — also crucial for maintaining healthy bones — and the increased likelihood of having a child with autistic traits, the researchers said.
“We found that pregnant females treated with active vitamin D in the equivalent of the first trimester of pregnancy produced offspring that did not develop these deficits,” Eyles added.
However, he also said that, “Recent funding will allow us to determine how much cholecalciferol – the supplement form that is safe for pregnant women – is needed to achieve the same levels of active hormonal vitamin D in the bloodstream.“
We know sun exposure is the major source of vitamin D, which skin cells manufacture with interaction to UV rays. It is also found in some foods such as in fatty fish like salmon and tuna, diary products, and cereals.
It was previously thought vitamin D had a protective anti-inflammatory effect during brain development, but the study didn’t find this to be the case.