Can Lack Of Vitamin D Cause Language Problems For Children?

Language development is vital for the wellbeing of a child. Language is undoubtedly our strongest asset as a species so it’s really important that we get a good command of our native language as quickly as possible, and as well as possible. It’s also well known that vitamin D is very important to living a healthy lifestyle. It is one of the most widely studied vitamins of recent times.

Having deficiencies in this vitamin can cause a huge number of health problems and pregnant women are known to be more at risk of lacking vitamins. Unfortunately this can also lead to the women passing on the deficiency to their babies. Children who are born with a vitamin D deficiency are at a risk of low birth weight, asthma and now, most worryingly, stunted language development.

Researchers from Telethon Institute for Child Health Research conducted a study in Australia to look at the issue. They looked at 743 women who provided blood samples at 18 weeks gestation, an important time for the development of the unborn child. The researchers then followed the development of the children after their birth.

Overall there was no correlation between levels of vitamin D and significant behavioural or emotional issues in children. But those with deficiencies in the vitamin were more than twice as likely to have significant language development problems.

While these findings certainly have implications for mothers with low levels of vitamin D there is still an awful lot of research that needs to be done to look at how we can potentially avoid the problem. It’s not yet known, for example, whether vitamin D supplements would stop the problem, or whether the vitamin is better sourced from a healthy diet.

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