A new study out of Amman, Jordan, has found that most newborns in the region are deficient in vitamin D.
Vitamin D deficiency is common in many Middle Eastern countries due to lifestyle habits and heavy use of clothing, which obstruct the body’s ability to produce vitamin D.
In the current study, researchers looked at newborn infants born at Al Bashir Government Hospital in Amman, Jordan. The researchers looked at 3,731 newborns, obtaining vitamin D samples via heel stick within 96 hours of their birth.
What they found were extremely deficient vitamin D levels. The median vitamin D level in newborns was 3.4 ng/ml, well below the deficiency threshold of 20 ng/ml. Furthermore, the researchers found that 94.1% of newborns were deficient in vitamin D with levels less than 20 ng/ml.
Expectedly, maternal vitamin D supplementation and time spent outside during pregnancy were associated with higher vitamin D levels in the newborns.
The researchers recommended that pregnant women supplement with vitamin D.