Friday, 30 April 2010

News_ A new research study shows Mothers getting insufficient sun may increase the MS Risk in Babies

A study has found that children whose mothers had low exposure to sunlight during their first three months of pregnancy may have a higher risk of developing multiple sclerosis later in life. Sunshine is the main source of vitamin D. Low vitamin D levels have been linked to a higher risk of MS for a long time. Experts have suspected that an expectant mother's lack of exposure to sunshine may affect the unborn child's central nervous system or immune system. This might lead on to developing MS at a later stage.

The research study looked at the records of 1,524 MS patients born between 1920 and 1950 in Australia. It discovered that more of them born in the months of November and December rather than other times of the year. The logic is that their first trimester happened during the winter months of April to June which is obviously the period when pregnant women in the southern hemisphere stateside to escape the cold. This means that they would have had reduced vitamin D levels because they would not have been exposed to as much sunlight. There were far fewer MS patients who were born in May and June which means that their first trimesters were in the early summer months of September to November.

The researchers explained that Vitamin D may be especially crucial for the development of the fetus's central nervous system.

"Vitamin D supplementation for the prevention of multiple sclerosis might also need to be considered during in utero development," they said in the paper.

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