Autism Linked To Low Levels Of Vitamin D At Birth, Study Says

November 30, 2017
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According to a new study, autism children are believed to have lower levels of vitamin D when they were in the womb.

Researchers have found a possible link between autism and vitamin D.  They believe that low levels of the vitamin during pregnancy could greatly increase the possibility of a child having the developmental disorder.

Past research suggested that Autism might be related to vitamin D somehow, but this new study made a further step.  The team looked at how prevalent autism was among 3-year-olds in the study and compared that to how much vitamin D was present when they were born, using “neonatal dried blood samples.”

Among thousands of toddler subjects, 310 were diagnosed with the developmental disorder.

“The median [vitamin D] level was significantly lower in children with ASD as compared to controls,” the study says.

Compared to the babies receiving enough vitamin D, children who had less vitamin D as infants had a 260 percent increased risk of developing autism. The risk decreased, the more neonatal vitamin D there was.

Slide 1 of 10: <p>More than 3.5 million adults and children in the United States have an <a href="http://www.health.com/autism">autism spectrum disorder</a> (ASD)-that's one in every 68 births. More people have been diagnosed with autism spectrum disorders in recent years, according to data from the <a href="https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/data.html">CDC</a>; and with this increase has come more knowledge and awareness for the developmental disorder. But there are still a lot of misconceptions about autism. Here, nine things you may not know about autism spectrum disorders, including symptoms, how children are diagnosed, available treatments, and more.</p>(Picture from msn.com)

“Neonatal vitamin D status was significantly associated with the risk of ASD and intellectual disability,” according to the study.

Autism Spectrum Disorders are defined by the impairment in communication and social interactions, as well as other cognitive and emotional issues. The root of the problems might lie in the number of connections between brain cells as too many neural connections might overload and confuse the brain.

Vitamin D might affect other health conditions, including dementia, migraines and mental illness. In the case of the latter two, scientists have said that low levels of the vitamin could make symptoms of the mental illnesses worse.

Our bodies produce vitamin D when our skin is exposed to sunlight. The vitamin is important for calcium absorption, growth, and immune function.

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