Staying at home? Make sure you and your baby are getting essential Vitamin D

Vitamin D from the sun plays a hugely important part in both pregnancy and in a child’s development. It’s a vital nutrient for helping your body absorb calcium and is also needed to promote bone growth. 

As a result of the varying degrees of self-isolation at the moment, you and your children may be getting less sun on the skin than usual. 

Thankfully the weather has been on our side so if you’re lucky to have a garden you probably don’t need to worry as you’ll be outdoors a lot. If you don’t have an outdoor space, Aptaclub, an online resource for Irish parents, has advised there are still lots of ways to get more Vitamin D whilst staying at home. 

If you can, do go out for short intervals every day or every other day. Allowing sunlight on the face, arms and hands of your little one for even five to 15 minutes can make a huge difference. 

Open the windows! During your time indoors, don’t just open the curtains but the windows wide too to allow direct sunlight to flood into your house. Vitamin D is made in the skin by the UV-B light of the sun’s rays. This light does not travel through glass so you’ll need to allow it to come through the windows for direct exposure.

It might be worth adding some more foods enriched with Vitamin D to the family meal plans until normal life resumes. Salmon, tuna and eggs are some great kid-friendly options. In addition, you can look for foods fortified with Vitamin D such as milk or soy. A daily supplementation with Vitamin D is generally recommended during this time. For babies particularly, enriched follow on milks and growing up milks make it easy to increase intake. 

And remember, if you’re concerned your child is not getting enough Vitamin D, you can speak to your doctor or a healthcare professional to get support. 

Join Aptaclub today for more Stay at Home inspiration and information from its expert team of midwives, nutritionists and advisors. 

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