Consider the potential... preterm birth 3 times more likely and c section 4 times more likely if a pregnant woman's vitamin D serum level is less than 20 ng/mL (which is severely deficient and highly prevalent, especially in darker skinned individuals). The increased risk of Cesarean could be due to the two-fold increase in preeclampsia, prenatal infections, etc. potentially caused by deficient vitamin D (lots of recent research connecting the two, which is why even the March of Dimes is now focusing on vitamin D).
Not only is the pregnancy affected by deficiency, these babies are being deprived of vitamin D which is a prehormone essential to their health, growth, and development. It protects the brain against neurotoxins and heavy metals. Deficiency been clearly linked to increased incidence of diabetes. And the above levels (below 20) leave baby at risk for rickets - which these days is being mistaken for child abuse and is causing innocent parents to lose their babies.
Why are we not doing more about this, especially when the solution is so easy - screen for vitamin D deficiency and increase vitamin D serum levels as needed to the 40-60 ng/ml range?
Is there anyone out there who is aware of this major health issue? What are you doing about it? Please let's start this conversation and get the awareness out there. Right now, GrassrootsHealth is starting a program to "Protect Our Children NOW!," to inform the public about the importance of vitamin D for pregnancy and children, and to get pregnant women routinely screened for vitamin D deficiency. You can show your support in just seconds by endorsing the program (as an individual, organization, or group) here: http://grassrootshealth.wufoo.com/forms/m7x3r3/
In the meantime, here is a recent study from Spain. There are many, many other studies out there. I hope to be posting more soon. http://aace.metapress.com/content/r738885w01856536/fulltext.pdf