NICE U-turn on vitamin D intake in pregnancy

NICE has signalled a U-turn on its guidance for vitamin D supplementation in pregnancy.

A draft guideline on maternal and child nutrition states that women with dark skin or little exposure to sunlight should be advised to take 10 mg of vitamin D daily.

All pregnant women should be told of the benefits of vitamin D supplements in pregnancy and childhood, says NICE. Women eligible for support through Healthy Start should receive vitamin D, A and C supplements free.

There are concerns that low levels of vitamin D in pregnancy can lead to type-1 diabetes in the child. Low vitamin D levels in childhood have also been linked to rickets and hypocalcaemia.

But previous NICE antenatal guidance published in 2003 stated there was insufficient evidence to warrant vitamin D supplements in pregnancy.

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