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Vitamin D’s role in the immune defense inhibits the ageing process

Vitamin D’s role in the immune defense inhibits the ageing processMost cells in the body have receptors for vitamin D, a nutrient that works as a steroid hormone. The different immune cells in the body are particularly dependent on vitamin D. Not only is this important for our ability to fight infections, but it also helps the body regulate inflammatory processes, which are the common thread in most chronic diseases and in ageing, according to a study that is published in Nutrients. The authors, Professor Carten Carlberg and Dr. Eunike Velleur, two of the world’s leading experts on vitamin D, explain why we need much more vitamin D than officially recommended when it comes fighting age.

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◊ Ubiquinone or ubiqinol  - does it really matter?

◊ Glucosamine

◊ Women benefit from Omega-3

◊ Organic or inorganic chromium

◊ Essential Nutrients

◊ What is selenium?

◊ About vitamin E: Natural alfa-tocopherol

Iodine’s role in child growth, metabolism, and fertility

 Iodine’s role in child growth, metabolism, and fertilityIodine is involved in the body’s production of thyroid hormones, and we humans need plenty of iodine throughout life, especially during periods such as fetal development and child development. Iodine is also important for brain development and cognitive skills. Severe iodine deficiency during pregnancy and during a child’s first years of life may result in stunted growth and/or mental retardation, but there has been uncertainty about how a minor iodine deficiency affects the child before and after birth. In a review article that is published in Nutrients, the authors look closer at iodine’s role in fertility and child growth. Apparently, iodine deficiencies are quite common, and we even need selenium and other nutrients to secure a well-functioning thyroid gland.

Many people with chronic diseases lack magnesium

- and a regular blood test cannot reveal it

 Many people with chronic diseases lack magnesiumAlthough humans generally live longer now, an increasing number of people suffer from chronic diseases. Our medicine consumption is steadily increasing, yet the underlying causes are not addressed, and it is often down to a lack of essential nutrients. Just think of magnesium, a nutrient that is involved in more than 300 different enzyme processes that are important for our nervous system, digestion, muscle function, heart function, blood pressure, bone health, pregnancy, and utilization of vitamin D. This also means that lack of magnesium may be involved in the development of asthma, stress, insomnia, constipation, migraines, neurological diseases, cardiovascular diseases, breast cancer, premature deliveries etc. A recent review article published in Scientifica looks at the importance of magnesium in clinical therapy, and it is vital that magnesium supplements are in a form that the body can absorb and utilize.

A green diet that includes fish and eggs lowers the risk of a miscarriage

A green diet that includes fish and eggs lowers the risk of a miscarriageAround one in six pregnancies results in spontaneous abortion. Although there can be different reasons for this, scientists have found that eating a healthy diet with lots of vegetables, fruit, fish, shellfish, eggs, and grains can lower the risk by over 50 percent. This was shown in a meta-analysis from the University of Birmingham in England. Earlier research shows that selenium, a trace element that many people are deficient in, plays a particularly important role.

A vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy may harm the fetus

A vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy may harm the fetusA new British study that is published in British Journal of Nutrition shows that getting too little vitamin D during pregnancy has a negative effect on the social development and motor skills of the toddler. Vitamin D is believed to play a role in brain development. It is vital for the pregnant mother to pay careful attention to getting enough vitamin D all year round, as our modern lifestyle with indoor activities, our frequent use of sunscreen with high sun factor, being overweight, and having dark skin contribute to the widespread deficiency of this nutrient.

Antioxidants and their role in sperm cell quality

Antioxidants and their role in sperm cell qualityImpaired sperm quality if one of the major reasons for involuntary infertility. Studies show that oxidative stress, an imbalance between harmful free radicals and protective antioxidants, causes damage to sperm cells. In a review article that is published in Reproductive Sciences, a group of researchers look closer at different molecular mechanisms and how vitamins C, E, selenium, zinc, and coenzyme Q10 plus other antioxidants protect the vulnerable sperm cells.

Baby blues and postpartum depression may be a result of nutrient deficiencies and slow metabolism

Baby blues and postpartum depression may be a result of nutrient deficiencies and slow metabolismAfter giving birth, the mother’s adaptability and resources are put to the test. Also, the mother’s “baby brain” tends to take over. Unfortunately, many new mothers get the baby blues, and around 10 percent develop an actual postpartum depression that requires immediate attention. It is important to focus on the underlying causes that include the course of the delivery plus hormonal, biological, social, and emotional changes.

Birth defects can be avoided with folic acid supplements or enriched flour

- and the upper safe limit makes no sense

Birth defects can be avoided with folic acid supplements or enriched flour There really is no need to have an upper safe intake limit for folic acid, and we ought to enrich flour with this nutrient to prevent children from being born with potentially disabling or life-threatening brain or spinal cord defects. This is part of the conclusion of a new study from Queen Mary University of London, and it supports an earlier study from Aarhus University in Denmark. Folic acid deficiencies, which are rather common, may lead to fatigue, poor memory, dementia, and a number of other health problems later in life. It is therefore important that we focus on this essential nutrient.

Breastfeeding and vitamin D supplements for infants and bigger children prevent asthma and allergies

Breastfeeding and vitamin D supplements for infants and bigger children prevent asthma and allergiesAllergic diseases such as asthma, hay fever, food allergies and contact dermatitis are becoming increasingly common. It makes a big difference to breastfeed for at least six months because breast milk contains various compounds that strengthen the child’s gut flora and immune defense. Vitamin D supplements are also important, and Icelandic research suggests that is pays off to continue giving them to children until the age of six years. Unfortunately, many parents forget to give their children vitamin D until the age of two, as recommended. Also, many children get too little sunlight during the summer period and don’t get vitamin D supplements when it is winter, and that is something we all need at these latitudes.

Certain fatty acids give preterm babies improved vision

Certain fatty acids give preterm babies improved visionPreterm babies have a risk of impaired vision, but if they are given supplements of omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids at the age of two and half years their vision improves. This was demonstrated in a Swedish study that is published in The Lancet Regional Health – Europe. The scientists explain why these fatty acids are so important, not just for eye health but for the brain and for health in general.

Children with a vitamin B12 deficiency have difficulty with problem solving and social behavior

Children with a vitamin B12 deficiency have difficulty with problem solving and social behaviorVitamin B12 is important for the development of the brain, and young children with low levels of the nutrient are challenged when it comes to solving cognitive tests such as puzzles, letter recognition, and the ability to understand the feelings of other children. Vitamin B12-deficient children are therefore more vulnerable and generally have a more difficult start in life. Researchers have demonstrated this in a study that is published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Compounds in fish oil can prevent miscarriage and preterm delivery

Compounds in fish oil can prevent miscarriage and preterm deliveryAccording to a study from Columbia University’s College of Dental Medicine and Vagelos College of Physicians and Surgeons, there are certain compounds in fish oil that can prevent pregnancy complications that follow in the wake of a regular bacterial infection. These complications include miscarriage, preterm delivery, and infant death. There are an estimated 15 million premature deliveries per year on a global scale, and each year around one million babies die as a result of this. Preterm infants also have an increased risk of vision impairment, retarded physical development, and learning disabilities. The researchers therefore suggest new strategies for recommending nutritional supplements and fish oil supplements during pregnancy.

Danish and Finnish studies: Oily fish or fish oil supplements taken during pregnancy boost the baby’s brain and development

Danish and Finnish studies: Oily fish or fish oil supplements taken during pregnancy boost the baby’s brain and developmentA pregnant woman can support the development of her baby’s brain and vision by consuming oily fish regularly, according to a new Finnish study. Meanwhile, a new Danish study shows that fish oil supplements given to pregnant women give their offspring a better start at life because of their content of omega-3 fatty acids. Unfortunately, the consumption of omega-3 has gone down, and pregnant women are discouraged from eating tuna and other good sources of omega-3, as these fish contain mercury. Health authorities should take this dilemma into account and possibly recommend high-quality supplements of purified fish oil to pregnant women and small children – just like they recommend extra folic acid, iron, and vitamin D. Pregnant vegetarians and vegans should pay careful attention and make sure that their child gets enough omega-3.

Diet changes and specific supplements can improve sperm quality and testosterone levels

Diet changes and specific supplements can improve sperm quality and testosterone levelsInfertility affects around one in seven couples. WHO considers it a global health problem. One of the leading causes is impaired semen quality, and Danish, Norwegian, and German men have lower sperm quality than any other male populations. Impaired sperm quality may be a result of an unhealthy lifestyle with stress, tobacco, stimulants, and hormone-disrupting compounds. On the other hand, scientists from Mexico have found that supplements of zinc, selenium, Q10, and omega-3 have an effect on the number of sperm cells and their quality. Other studies show that zinc and selenium protect sperm cells and are important for testosterone levels.

During pregnancy, the developing fetus is entirely dependent on the mother’s selenium status

During pregnancy, the developing fetus is entirely dependent on the mother’s selenium statusThe need for the trace element selenium is increased in pregnant and breastfeeding women because it supports a host of different proteins that are particularly important for tissue growth. Also, selenium supports different antioxidants that protect the unborn baby’s organs and tissues. A new review article published in Nutrients shows that lack of selenium during pregnancy may result in oxidative stress, stunted growth, and low birth weight. This may eventually have consequences for the baby’s development, cognitive skills, and health in general. The authors also mention that an expecting mother’s alcohol abuse may have a more negative health impact if she is selenium-deficient. It is a problem that selenium deficiency is such a widespread problem in Europe and other parts of the world.

Eating salmon during pregnancy may help prevent asthma

Eating salmon during pregnancy may help prevent asthmaIf you are pregnant it may be wise to eat salmon. According to a new study it lowers your child's risk of developing asthma, which is a rather common ailment. But what is it in salmon that prevents asthma, and what about those who dislike the taste of fish?

Even minor zinc deficiencies may harm your digestion and health

Even minor zinc deficiencies may harm your digestion and healthAccording to a new study that is published in the British Journal of Nutrition, even minor zinc deficiencies may cause poor digestion, skin problems, and fatigue - and lead to numerous other health problems in the long run. You should therefore avoid zinc shortages, and people with poor diets, vegans, vegetarians, and older people should make sure to get enough zinc.

Fish oil from oily fish or supplements protects children against asthma

Fish oil from oily fish or supplements protects children against asthmaFish oil contains the omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA, which are important for normal development of the baby’s brain and immune defense. Pregnant women who eat oily fish several times a week help their babies against developing asthma later in life. Oily fish and fish oil supplements have similar effects. This was shown in two studies from the University of South Florida in Tampa, USA. However, pregnant women should avoid predatory fish like tuna that contain mercury. For those who dislike the taste of fish or who simply do not eat enough, fish oil supplements are an option.

Fish oil supplementation during pregnancy lowers the risk of premature delivery

- and being overweight poses a particular risk

Fish oil supplementation during pregnancy lowers the risk of premature deliveryPremature delivery increases the baby’s risk of being born with developmental disturbances or dying within its first months of life. It is commonly known that omega-3 fatty acids are important for normal pregnancy. According to a new and updated Cochrane review article, overweight people are at increased risk of lacking omega-3 fatty acids, and supplementing with omega-3 may lower their risk of giving birth too soon. Although the new study supports earlier research, there was something that surprised the scientists.

Fish oil supplementation during pregnancy prevents childhood asthma

Fish oil supplementation during pregnancy prevents childhood asthmaAsthma is the leading disease among children and adolescents in the Western world, and the rate has been going up for the past 20 years. A new Danish study that is published in the New England Journal of Medicine shows that pregnant women who take supplements of fish oil are much less likely to give birth to children that develop asthma later on. The question is how much fish oil it takes to obtain the positive effect.

Fish oil supplements during pregnancy give larger babies and provide other health benefits

Fish oil supplements during pregnancy give larger babies and provide other health benefitsOmega-3 fatty acids are essential, as they are needed to make cell membranes and support a host of biochemical functions. During pregnancy, there is a particular need for the two omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA to support the growth and brain development of the child. Fish oil is a good source of these two fatty acids, and supplementing with them in the third trimester can prolong the pregnancy and increase birth weight, according to a Scandinavian study published in Journal of Nutrition. The study supports earlier studies of pregnant women, where it has been shown that fish oil lowers the risk of preterm delivery and complications such as development of disorders and death.

Fish oil supplements may prevent premature birth

Fish oil supplements may prevent premature birthAccording to two clinical studies, daily supplementation with the omega-3 fatty acid, DHA (docosahexaenoic acid), which is found in fish oil, may prevent thousands of premature deliveries – before the 34th week of pregnancy. In addition, both mother and child may have other befits from the active compounds in fish oil.

Folic acid during pregnancy lowers the risk of having overweight babies

Folic acid during pregnancy lowers the risk of having overweight babiesThere are several reasons why pregnant women have an increased need for folic acid. Overweight women should even pay special attention, as folic acid reduces their risk of having babies who are also overweight. This was seen in a new American study that got published in JAMA Pediatrics.

Folic acid intake during pregnancy is related to the baby’s neuropsychological development

Folic acid intake during pregnancy is related to the baby’s neuropsychological developmentFolic acid is important for fetal growth and development, and that is why pregnant women have an increased need for the nutrient. It is commonly known that supplementation with folic acid during pregnancy lowers the risk of spina bifida. A new study shows that maternal intake of folic acid in the late part of pregnancy is of vital importance for the baby’s lingual development at the age of two years. This was shown in a study that is published in Epidemiology. Unfortunately, many pregnant women forget to take their folic acid supplements.

Folic acid lowers the risk of children developing autism caused by pesticide exposure

Folic acid lowers the risk of children developing autism caused by pesticide exposureThe number of children diagnosed with autism has increased steadily over the past decades, and a number of factors can cause the disease. Now, scientists from the University of California and other institutions in the United States have discovered that pregnant women who get the recommended amount of folic acid or increase their intake right around the time of conception have a lower risk of giving birth to a child that develops autism caused by pesticide exposure.

Folic acid supplementation through the entire pregnancy may help improve the child’s intelligence

Folic acid supplementation through the entire pregnancy may help improve the child’s intelligenceFolic acid plays a role in tissue growth and fetal development during pregnancy. A new study that was presented at an annual congress for British psychologists in Brighton shows that folic acid supplements may even improve the child’s psychological development. This is vital for the child’s ability to handle his or her own feelings and managing socially.

Healthy fertility and pregnancy require sufficient selenium

Healthy fertility and pregnancy require sufficient seleniumLack of selenium increases the risk of impaired fertility and complications in connection with pregnancy and birth. Because selenium deficiencies are rather common, both men and women should ideally make sure that they get enough of this essential trace element that is involved in various functions - right from conception to delivery.

How to avoid PMS and menstrual pain

How to avoid PMS and menstrual painPMS (Premenstrual Syndrome) entails a long list of symptoms such as headaches, mood swings, fatigue, irritability, fluid retention, and a strong craving for sweets and stimulants - and even a desire for divorce.

Intake of fish during pregnancy benefits the child’s metabolism, blood sugar, and weight later in life

Intake of fish during pregnancy benefits the child’s metabolism, blood sugar, and weight later in lifeFish is good source of omega-3 fatty acids and other nutrients that are important for normal development of the fetus. Still, there has been a lot of discussion about whether or not pregnant women should eat fish, as this is also a source of mercury and other environmental toxins. A whole new study shows that pregnant women who eat moderate amounts of fish tend to give birth to children with a lower risk of diabetes and overweight later in life compared with women that eat very little fish or none at all. Beware that fish often contains mercury but it also contains selenium, which has a protective effect.

Lack of iodine during pregnancy may harm the baby’s mental development

Lack of iodine during pregnancy may harm the baby’s mental developmentAn increasing number of young women risk giving birth to babies with an insufficiently developed mental capacity due to iodine deficiency. The deficiency may be a result of nutrient-depleted soil and altered diets with fewer iodine-containing animal sources. Also, many people have a preference for sea salt and Himalayan salt rather than iodine-enriched salt. Iodine deficiency appears to be most prevalent among women who eat plant-based vegan diets, but it is also seen among women with normal diets that include meat. This was demonstrated in a study from the University of South Australia. The challenge for pregnant women is to get adequate amounts of iodine and to find iodine-enriched table salt that has proper quality and does not contain anti-caking agents such as aluminum.

Lack of vitamin B12 during pregnancy increases your risk of overweight and related diseases

Lack of vitamin B12 during pregnancy increases your risk of overweight and related diseasesMany women gain weight during pregnancy and have great difficulty with losing the excess pounds afterwards. According to a new study that was presented at an international endocrinology conference, a possible explanation may be lack of vitamin B12, which is a nutrient that helps the body metabolize fat. The researchers therefore suggest that it may be a good idea to take a vitamin B12 supplement during pregnancy, as overweight may eventually lead to health problems such as type 2 diabetes. There can also be emotional consequences of being overweight.

Lack of vitamin D at birth increases the risk of elevated blood pressure in the child

Lack of vitamin D at birth increases the risk of elevated blood pressure in the childExpecting mothers should pay careful attention to getting enough vitamin D all year round, especially because vitamin D deficiencies are so commonplace, to begin with. Lack of vitamin D at birth and the first years of life is associated with an increased risk of infant hypertension, and the problem can even continue to adulthood. This was shown in a study that is published in the science journal Hypertension. The researchers advise pregnant women to have their vitamin D levels measured, and they even recommend vitamin D supplements for pregnant women and children as a way of preventing elevated blood pressure later in life.

Lack of vitamin D during pregnancy and the baby’s first years of life increases the risk of asthma and allergy

Lack of vitamin D during pregnancy and the baby’s first years of life increases the risk of asthma and allergyThe number of small children affected by asthma and allergy is a growing worldwide problem. Vitamin D deficiency is also an increasing problem among pregnant women and newborn babies. Vitamin D is important for a well-functioning immune defense and for that reason, a team of Dutch scientists have looked closer at the relation in a review article. They conclude that having sufficient vitamin D in the blood during pregnancy and the first years of life can lower the risk of developing asthma and allergies. The scientists also observed that vitamin D supplements can lessen the burden of these widespread diseases. Their study is published in Nutrients.

Lack of vitamin D during pregnancy increases the child’s risk of developing ADHD

Lack of vitamin D during pregnancy increases the child’s risk of developing ADHDThe number of children and adolescents with ADHD has skyrocketed in the past decade, and the human and socioeconomic costs are enormous. A major cause may be the widespread problems with vitamin D deficiency, according to a study from Turku University in Finland. It does not make things any easier that sun awareness campaigns fail to give people an alternative way of getting enough vitamin D all year around, and it is also a problem that many pregnant women don’t take their supplements as recommended.

Lack of vitamin D during pregnancy increases the risk of autism

- especially among boys

Lack of vitamin D during pregnancy increases the risk of autismVitamin D controls a variety of processes in the brain and that is important for the child in a number of different ways. According to a new study from University of Queensland, Australia, there is an increased risk of autism – especially among boys – if the mother lacks vitamin D during her pregnancy. The explanation lies in the fact that the vitamin deficiency can affect levels of sex hormones in the brain. Several studies link vitamin D deficiency to autism and show that vitamin D supplements can improve hyperactivity and other signs of impaired functioning in children with autism.

Lack of vitamin D during pregnancy may increase the child's risk of sclerosis

Lack of vitamin D during pregnancy may increase the child's risk of sclerosisIt has long been known that vitamin D deficiencies increase the risk of sclerosis. According to a study that is published in JAMA Neurology, having too little vitamin D is even a problem during pregnancy, as it increases the child's risk of developing sclerosis later in life.

Lack of vitamin E is widespread and it increases the risk of fetal damage and miscarriage

Lack of vitamin E is widespread and it increases the risk of fetal damage and miscarriageA team of scientists from Oregon State University in the United States has managed to explain why lack of vitamin E may cause neurological damage to the developing fetus, and why it increases the risk of spontaneous miscarriage. Their study is published in the science journal Free Radical Biology and Medicine and here, the scientists underline how important it is for both women who are pregnant and those plan pregnancy to get enough vitamin E.

Lack of zinc harms your fertility

- and has a long-term effect on the maturation of a woman’s eggs

Lack of zinc harms your fertilityIt is well established that zinc is important for the maturation of the eggs in the fallopian tube during a woman’s menstrual cycle. However, a new American study has shown that zinc is involved in even earlier stages of the maturation of the eggs. A zinc deficiency therefore reduces the chance of the eggs being fertilized and dividing later on, which they are supposed to during pregnancy. Lack of zinc is rather common and may harm your fertility for several months to come.

Large doses of folic acid lower your risk of preeclampsia

Large doses of folic acid lower your risk of preeclampsiaPreeclampsia is a serious pregnancy disorder with elevated blood pressure, proteinuria, and life-threatening complications in severe cases. It has already been reported that folic acid supplements help prevent preeclampsia in pregnancy. According to a new study that is published in Pregnancy Hypertension, taking even larger quantities of folic acid seem to offer additional protection. Unfortunately, many pregnant women forget to take folic acid supplements that are normally recommended as a way of avoiding spina bifida.

Levels of B vitamins in pregnant women affect their children’s risk of eczema

Levels of B vitamins in pregnant women affect their children’s risk of eczemaFewer children have eczema around the age of 12 months if their mothers had higher levels of a particular B vitamin during pregnancy, according to a new study from the University of Southampton.

Low intake of selenium and zinc during pregnancy increases the risk of congenital heart defects (2)

Low intake of selenium and zinc during pregnancy increases the risk of congenital heart defectsCongenital heart defects are the most common birth defect on a global scale. The condition is associated with a number of different complications and even comes with an increased risk of infant death. Maternal nutritional status is vital for the development of the fetus, and a team of Chinese scientists has looked closer at how selenium, zinc, and copper affect the development of the disease. They found that a relatively high intake of selenium and zinc lowers the risk of congenital heart defects. Therefore, the scientists call for increased focus on these two minerals during pregnancy and advocate the use of supplements.

Magnesium improves quality of life in pregnant women and women with hormonal imbalances

Magnesium improves quality of life in pregnant women and women with hormonal imbalancesMagnesium plays a role in a variety of enzyme processes that are involved in 80 percent of the body’s metabolic functions, and a magnesium deficiency can affect different genes and diseases. Such deficiencies are very common, especially among women. A Russian study of pregnant women and women with different types of hormonal imbalances shows that four weeks of magnesium supplementation can improve health and quality of life by several parameters.

Magnesium supplements can prevent Preeclampsia and life-threatening spasms

Magnesium supplements can prevent Preeclampsia and life-threatening spasmsPreeclampsia is a precursor of eclampsia, a condition characterized by spasms and seizures that can be life-threatening for the expecting mother and her unborn child. According to a new review article that is published in the science journal Cureus, injections of magnesium sulfate have been tested as part of the treatment for severe preeclampsia and related spasms. This therapy form has also been introduced in Denmark. It is important during pregnancy to get enough magnesium to prevent eclampsia.

Omega-3 lowers the risk of preterm delivery and complications related to this problem

Omega-3 lowers the risk of preterm delivery and complications related to this problemPremature infants have a higher risk of development disturbances. On a global scale, preterm delivery is the leading cause of death among children younger than five years of age. Pregnant women, who increase their intake of omega-3 fatty acids by taking supplements of fish oil, are able to lower their risk of preterm delivery, according to a new Cochrane review article. Earlier studies show that increased intake of oily fish can also lower the risk of preterm delivery, but it is important that the expecting mother avoids eating predatory fish such as tuna and other types of fish that are likely to contain too much mercury.

Omega-3 supplements give children better vision

- and improve their cognition and motor skills

Omega-3 supplements give children better visionAccording to a large meta-analysis, supplementing with omega-3 fatty acids has a positive effect on children by improving their vision, their cognition, and their motor skills. Unfortunately, modern diets provide far too little omega-3. For that reason, health authorities should consider recommending supplements of purified fish oil for pregnant women and children, just like they recommend folic acid, iron, and vitamin D.

Overweight in pregnancy and lack of vitamin D affect the health of the child

Overweight in pregnancy and lack of vitamin D affect the health of the childOverweight or obesity during pregnancy is linked to low vitamin D levels. This negatively affects the health of the expecting mother, and in the long run it increases the child's risk of weak bones, overweight, type-2 diabetes, and allergies.

PCOS and infertility can be helped with dietary changes and a single nutritional supplement

PCOS and infertility can be helped with dietary changes and a single nutritional supplementPolycystic ovary syndrome (PCOS) is the leading cause of infertility and hormone disturbances in women of childbearing age. The condition is often a result of insulin resistance, an imbalance in the sugar metabolism that is typically accompanied by fatigue, abdominal obesity (apple-shaped body), overweight, and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease and type-2 diabetes. It makes perfect sense to stick with a blood sugar-stabilizing diet and to include a chromium supplement that increases insulin sensitivity and helps, indirectly, regulate the hormone balance. As a bonus effect, it becomes a lot easier to obtain and maintain your ideal weight.

Poor fertility and miscarriages may be a result of too little vitamin D

Poor fertility and miscarriages may be a result of too little vitamin DImpaired fertility and involuntary childlessness are common in the Nordic countries and there can be a number of reasons for these serious problems. However, according to a large Finnish study that is published in Nutrients, vitamin D deficiency, which is a widespread problem, may increase women’s risk of fertility problems and cause them to have a miscarriage.

Poor sperm quality is a frequent cause of infertility

- but dietary and lifestyle changes make a difference

Poor sperm quality is a frequent cause of infertilityApproximately one in seven couple is childless. Although there can be many underlying causes, poor sperm quality is an increasing problem. It may be caused by a lack of certain nutrients and exposure to different environmental factors, but, fortunately, it possible to improve sperm quality and increase the chances of conception by means of relevant dietary adjustments and the use of specific supplements. New research shows that epigenetic factors (factors that affect the environment of the sperm cell) determine sperm health and are therefore crucial for activating the genes of the sperm cell so the fetus can develop.

Pregnant smokers can reduce the damage to baby’s lungs by supplementing with vitamin C

Pregnant smokers can reduce the damage to baby’s lungs by supplementing with vitamin CPregnant women are advised not to smoke, as this may harm the unborn baby. However, not all pregnant smokers are able to quit their habit. A new American study shows that vitamin C supplementation can reduce the risk to the baby’s lungs and improve the baby’s breathing.

Pregnant women need selenium for the development of their baby’s brain

Pregnant women need selenium for the development of their baby’s brainDuring pregnancy, the unborn child needs different nutrients for proper development of its brain and nervous system. Even if the mother eats a balanced diet, it can be difficult to get enough selenium for a number of reasons. In a new Italian animal study that is published in Nutrients, scientists have looked closer at selenium’s role during pregnancy and lactation. They observed that even minor selenium deficiencies can have a negative effect on the offspring’s brain development and behavior. This study supports earlier human studies showing how vital it is for the mother to get plenty of selenium during pregnancy and breastfeeding.

Pregnant women should eat oily fish to avoid premature delivery

– but what about the mercury? – but what about the mercury?

Pregnant women should eat oily fish to avoid premature deliveryOily fish is a great source of the essential omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA, which are important for the development of the brain and nervous system of the unborn child. Pregnant women with low levels of these two omega-3 fatty acids have a statistically significant increased risk of preterm delivery compared with pregnant women who have high levels of EPA and DHA in their blood. This was shown in a study from SSI in Copenhagen, carried out in collaboration with Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health in Boston, the United States. The problem is that many women are afraid to eat oily fish during their pregnancy because of the risk of mercury poisoning. So which fish are the safest for consumption – and what about fish oil supplements?

Pregnant women should take vitamin D supplements

Pregnant women should take vitamin D supplementsIt is important for the health of the unborn child that the expecting mother keeps her vitamin D levels high during her entire pregnancy. According to a study from Southampton University, vitamin D supplementation is less effective, if a pregnant woman starts with low levels of vitamin D in the early stage of her pregnancy, has major and sudden weight gain, and gives birth during winter.

Pregnant women with elevated blood pressure may be low in zinc

Pregnant women with elevated blood pressure may be low in zincZinc is involved in numerous physiological functions, some of which are important for pregnancy and fetal development. However, zinc deficiencies are common, especially in developing countries. Vegans are also at increased risk because it is difficult for the body to absorb zinc from a plant-based diet. Zinc deficiency in connection with pregnancy appears to increase the expecting mother’s risk of developing hypertension, and the elevated blood pressure may result in low birth weight and a low Apgar score, which is a health assessment of the baby in the minutes right after delivery. This was shown in a study that is published in Frontiers in Nutrition.

Pregnant women’s lack of multiple nutrients harms the development of the baby

Pregnant women’s lack of multiple nutrients harms the development of the babyRefined foods and plant-based diets lack vital nutrients that are highly important for a pregnant woman and the development of her unborn child’s body and brain. This was shown in a large study of mothers from high-income countries, where 90 percent of the participants lacked key nutrients such as vitamin B2, vitamin B6, folic acid, vitamin B12, and vitamin D. These widespread deficiencies have huge health consequences, which may be irreversible for the child. The scientists explain that the problem is made worse by the global push for eating more plant-based diets. Lack of omega-3 fatty acids that are primarily found in oily fish is also common and may harm the development of the child’s brain and increase the risk of postnatal depression in the mother.

Q10’s effect on various hormone disturbances

Q10’s effect on various hormone disturbancesQ10 has a key role in the cellular energy turnover and also serves as an antioxidant that protects the body against oxidative stress. Disruptions in the energy-producing mitochondria in cells and oxidative stress may also be involved in different types of hormone disturbances that affect the thyroid gland, pancreas, sex glands, pituitary gland, and the adrenal glands. In a new review article that is published in Antioxidants, scientists look closer at Q10’s role with particular focus on hyperthyroidism, type 2 diabetes, and poor sperm quality, all of which can be corrected through supplementation.

Q10’s role in health and disease

Q10’s role in health and diseaseQ10 is a unique compound with a key role in cellular energy turnover. It also serves as a powerful antioxidant. The body is able to synthesize most of the Q10 that it needs but as we grow older, our endogenous synthesis decreases, making us vulnerable in different ways. Cholesterol-lowering medicine and certain types of disease are also associated with lower levels of Q10 in the body. In a new review article, a group of scientists have scrutinized hundreds of Q10 studies that have been published in the years 2010-2020. They are able to conclude that Q10 is of particular importance to the heart, circulatory system, fertility, muscles, eyes and vision, and the ageing process. Things like migraines, chronic fatigue syndrome, and neurodegenerative diseases such as Parkinson’s and Alzheimer’s disease are also addressed. The body has difficulty with absorbing Q10 from food and supplements so it is recommendable to always choose a pharmaceutical-grade Q10 preparation with documented bioavailability.

Selenium deficiency and preterm birth

Selenium deficiency and preterm birthAn international team of researchers has just completed a huge study of the possible link between maternal DNA, selenium deficiency, and preterm labor. Earlier studies have shown that women with low blood selenium have an increased risk of preterm birth and that selenium supplementation may lower that risk. A problem in that respect is that climate changes and soil depletion may increase the risk of selenium deficiencies, especially in Europe.

Selenium deficiency in connection with diet, serious illness, and pregnancy increases your risk of autoimmune diseases, slow recovery, life-threatening complications, and miscarriage

Selenium deficiency in connection with diet, serious illness, and pregnancy increases your risk of autoimmune diseases, slow recovery, life-threatening complications, and miscarriageSelenium is a trace element with a number of essential functions. An estimated one billion people worldwide get too little dietary selenium. The problem is mainly a result of nutrient-depleted farmland. Moreover, blood levels of selenium drop drastically in connection with COVID-19 infections, serious illness, and pregnancy because the body has an increased need for the nutrient. Altogether, selenium deficiency increases the risk of complicated COVID-19 infections, autoimmune diseases such as rheumatoid arthritis, Hashimoto’s thyroiditis, preterm delivery, and miscarriage. Supplementation may help optimize blood levels of selenium, which can be relevant for preventing and treating a number of common diseases, according to an article that is published in International Journal of Medical Sciences.

Selenium deficiency is a global problem that increases the risk of serious and common diseases

Selenium deficiency is a global problem that increases the risk of serious and common diseasesLack of selenium, an essential trace element, may cause thyroid disorders, cardiovascular disease, virus infections, AIDS, infertility, neurological disturbances, and cancer. An estimated one billion people worldwide are selenium-deficient. This is mainly a result of nutrient-depleted soil, which is a real problem in places like Europe. For decades, scientists have been warning about this problem, and a lot suggests that we need more than the officially recommended intake to protect ourselves effectively against disease, according to a review article published in StatPearls.

Selenium’s and zinc’s essential role in fertility and a healthy pregnancy

Selenium’s and zinc’s essential role in fertility and a healthy pregnancyInvoluntary childlessness has become increasingly common. Many women find themselves in a race against time, and their biological clock keeps ticking louder and louder. Fertility therapies, miscarriages, preeclampsia, and other complications during pregnancy contribute to the physical and emotional burden. In a new Australian study that is published in Nutrients, the authors write about selenium and zinc and how these nutrients play an important role in fertility and a healthy pregnancy. They also address the problems with widespread selenium deficiency and point out that environmental toxins like mercury deplete levels of vital selenium-containing proteins in the body. The scientists point to supplements for fighting deficiencies, just like folic acid and iron are routinely recommended to pregnant women. It pays off to choose selenium yeast with multiple organic selenium compounds and organic zinc to help improve the bioavailability and utilization of the nutrients.

Selenium’s overlooked role in male and female fertility

Selenium’s overlooked role in male and female fertilitySelenium has an overlooked role in sperm quality and healthy pregnancies. A team of scientists from Romania has looked closer at blood levels of different selenium-containing antioxidants and found that low levels are significantly correlated with poor sperm quality. The scientists also explain that lack of selenium increases the risk of pregnancy-related complications, miscarriage, and preterm delivery. Both selenium deficiencies and infertility are common problems so selenium supplementation may be worth considering. For decades, Danish farmers have added selenium to animal fodder as a way of improving the fertility and general health of the animals.

Selenium’s role in puberty and fertility

Selenium’s role in puberty and fertilitySelenium is a trace element that supports over 30 essential selenoproteins, which have numerous functions. For the first time ever, a study of Mexican children reveals that lack of selenium delays the growth of pubic hairs and the development of sex organs in boys. It is a known fact that the agricultural soil in Mexico is low in selenium and that affects the entire food chain. The same is the case in Europe, for which reason farmers for decades have supplemented livestock with selenium as a way of improving fertility and preventing a number of deficiency problems. The big question is to what extent can selenium deficiency problems explain the impaired sperm quality that has been observed among young men? An estimated 500 million to one billon people worldwide get too little selenium from their diet.

Serious birth defects can be prevented with folic acid supplements and food enrichment

Serious birth defects can be prevented with folic acid supplements and food enrichmentFolic acid is of vital importance to fetal development which is why pregnant women have a much higher need for this nutrient. Although the Danish health authorities recommend that pregnant take folic acid supplements, some get started too late and others forget to take their supplements. In other countries, it is common practice to enrich flour with folic acid but apparently, the added quantity is insufficient. According to a new British study, many pregnant women still don’t get enough folic acid, which increases their risk of giving birth to a baby with neural tube defects that can lead to severe disabilities. Lack of folic acid can also affect the child’s mental development. The British researchers therefore recommend adding more folic acid to fluor as a way of preventing the birth defects. It’s simple and inexpensive and would also be relevant for Denmark.

Sperm quality relies on the presence of several nutrients

Sperm quality relies on the presence of several nutrientsPoor sperm quality, which is a bit of a taboo, is one of the main causes of involuntary infertility. Evidence suggests that Western diets can impair sperm quality, whereas the Mediterranean diet does the opposite. Vegan diets are somewhat controversial, according to a review article published in International Journal of Molecular Sciences. Previous research has shown that supplementation with selenium, zinc, fish oil, and coenzyme Q10 can improve sperm cell quality.

The guidelines for maternal fish intake during pregnancy need rethinking

The guidelines for maternal fish intake during pregnancy need rethinkingFish contains vitamin D, omega-3 fatty acids, selenium, and iodine, all of which are important for the fetus’ brain and development. However, fish also contains mercury and that discourages many pregnant women from eating fish. According to a new study that is published in NeuroToxicology, eating fish during pregnancy is actually not harmful at all, on the contrary, and the scientists behind the study argue that the precautionary guidelines need to be revised. Apparently, the selenium content in fish and seafood determines if mercury is dangerous or not.

The hormone balance requires essential nutrients but are you getting enough?

The hormone balance requires essential nutrients but are you getting enough?Hormonal imbalances have broad implications and increase the risk of chronic fatigue, overweight, impaired fertility, dry mucosa, hot flushes, slow metabolism, breast cancer, and many other problems. Lack of essential nutrients contributes to such disruptions of the sensitive hormone system. This is also the case with hormone-disrupting compounds.

The link between autism and zinc deficiency in the early stage of a child’s development

The link between autism and zinc deficiency in the early stage of a child’s developmentMore and more people get autism. The disease is linked to, among other things, lack of zinc in the childhood. Although it has still not been proved, whether zinc deficiencies during pregnancy can cause autism, scientists have discovered a link between zinc, genes, and the abnormal neurological connections that are associated with autism. The scientists therefore see a whole new potential for treating the condition, but one must also take into account other factors in the environment.

The link between low vitamin D levels in neonates and the development of schizophrenia later in life

The link between low vitamin D levels in neonates and the development of schizophrenia later in lifeThere are countless reasons why an expecting mother must make sure to get plenty of vitamin D to support the health of her child. Neonates that lack vitamin D are 44% more likely to develop schizophrenia later in life compared with neonates that do not have a vitamin D deficiency. This was demonstrated by Danish and Australian researchers in a recent study. This vital knowledge may help prevent schizophrenia in the future, and the scientists therefore recommend more focus on the importance of having adequate vitamin D levels during pregnancy.

The link between selenium intake during pregnancy, fetal development, and birth weight

The link between selenium intake during pregnancy, fetal development, and birth weightSelenium is an essential trace element that supports a host of different proteins and antioxidants that are important for pregnancy. According to a new Norwegian population study that is published in the science journal Nutrients, lack of selenium during pregnancy may stunt the growth of the fetus and result in low birth weight. This may have consequences for the child’s growth, cognitive skills, and health. Selenium deficiencies are rather common in Norway and the rest of Europe and that is a problem.

The relation between maternal vitamin D and the placenta affects the development of the fetus

The relation between maternal vitamin D and the placenta affects the development of the fetusVitamin D is of vital importance to the unborn child’s development of teeth, bones, immune defense, and various other things. The fetus is highly dependent on the mother’s vitamin D levels and that the nutrient can be transferred to the fetus and activated. A team of scientists has looked closer at the placenta and its role in helping the fetus utilize vitamin D. They hope their work can contribute to healthier pregnancies in the future.

The widespread lack of omega-3 among pregnant women has serious consequences

The widespread lack of omega-3 among pregnant women has serious consequencesThe two omega-3 fatty acids, EPA and DHA, which are found in oily fish and fish oil supplements are of vital importance to the child’s health and cognitive skills. However, according to a large American population study, 25 percent of pregnant women say that they rarely or never eat fish during their pregnancy, and even fewer take fish oil supplements. Lack of omega-3 during pregnancy can have serious consequences for the development of the child. Also, it increases the risk of postpartum depression in the mother. The study authors therefore advise pregnant women to eat oily fish or take a high-quality fish oil supplement.

Too much omega-6 during your pregnancy is harmful

Too much omega-6 during your pregnancy is harmfulPeople in the Western part of the world consume far too much omega-6, primarily in the form of linoleic acid from vegetable oils and processed foods such as margarine, fries, chips, and ready meals. A new study that is published in The Journal of Physiology shows that this may be harmful during pregnancy and can increase the risk of complications and developmental disorders in the baby.
Earlier studies show that consuming too much omega-6 increases the risk of inflammation and cardiovascular disease. And it is essential to balance your intake of omega-3 and omega-6, whether you are pregnant or not.

Vegetarian and vegan diets often lack iodine and other essential nutrients

Vegetarian and vegan diets often lack iodine and other essential nutrientsThere is a trending global shift towards vegetarian or vegan diets. However, these diets come with a risk of lacking essential nutrients that are primarily found in animal food sources. According to a large meta-analysis of Western diets, one of them is iodine. Iodine deficiency is a worldwide problem and has serious consequences because of iodine’s vital role in the thyroid function, energy production, estrogen balance, fertility, and healthy pregnancy outcome.

Vitamin B12 in breastmilk supports child growth and brain development

Vitamin B12 in breastmilk supports child growth and brain developmentFetuses and children need various nutrients, including vitamin B12, to support the development of the body and brain. According to a study published in The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, it is crucial to breastfeed the child for a period of at least six months to make sure it gets enough vitamin B12 from the mother’s milk. Most people get enough B12 from animal food sources. However, in countries and populations where people primarily consume plant-based diets, vitamin B12 deficiencies are common. The scientists behind the new study therefore recommend more focus on this specific area and recommend that pregnant and breastfeeding women take vitamin B12 as a supplement in case they don’t get enough from their diet.

Vitamin B3 helps prevent miscarriages and congenital defects

Vitamin B3 helps prevent miscarriages and congenital defectsA groundbreaking new Australian study shows that something as simple as a vitamin B3 supplement can prevent miscarriages and congenital defects of the heart and other organs. This is because the nutrient is involved in the body’s production of NAD, a molecule of vital importance to fetal development. Because vitamin B3 deficiencies are common, it is important to have increased focus on the vitamin, especially in connection with pregnancy.

Vitamin D and fish oil counteract croup us

Vitamin D and fish oil counteract croupBabies and small children are less likely to develop croup if their mothers have taken high-dosed vitamin D and fish oil during their pregnancy, according to a Danish study, where scientists have studied this relation for the very first time. Vitamin D and fish oil also benefit the child’s immune defense and counteract the inflammation in the respiratory system that triggers croup. The two supplements even have a positive impact on the child’s bone health and nervous system, and they also help prevent asthma.

Vitamin D and its importance for dental health

Vitamin D and its importance for dental healthLack of vitamin D is rather common and is associated with a host of diseases that affect the teeth and gums. In children, a vitamin D deficiency may result in fragile teeth with weak enamel and an increased risk of cavities. Later in life, the vitamin deficiency may also increase the risk of periodontal disease and certain types of oral cancer, according to an article that is published in the scientific journal Nutrients. The authors refer to a number of clinical studies that point to vitamin D’s different functions with regard to dental health. Also, they mention that vitamin D deficiencies are widespread and write that it may be necessary to take a supplement for proper dental health.

Vitamin D deficiency affects the neuronal development and the risk of schizophrenia

Vitamin D deficiency affects the neuronal development and the risk of schizophreniaDuring pregnancy, vitamin D plays an important role in the bone development of the unborn child, in the brain, and in other functions. Maternal lack of vitamin D during pregnancy may therefore have serious consequences for the fetus and its development. This also goes for the development of neurons in the dopamine-producing area of the brain, which can most likely result in dysfunctions of the dopamine balance, a problem that is seen in young individuals and adults with schizophrenia. This was demonstrated in a new study that is published in Journal of Neurochemistry. The study supports an earlier review article where it was seen that early stages of psychotic disorders like schizophrenia are linked to severe deficiencies of vitamin D and other nutrients with vital importance to brain health, especially during pregnancy.

Vitamin D deficiency is widespread among newborn babies

- especially babies of color

Vitamin D deficiency is widespread among newborn babiesVitamin D is vital for normal development of the baby’s bones, cognitive skills, IQ, immune defense, and a number of other things. According to a new British study, however, a third of white infants lack vitamin D. The problem is even more pronounced in dark-skinned babies. Here, around half of them lack vitamin D. More focus is needed on pregnant women from exposed groups to help ensure that they get adequate amounts of the nutrient.

Vitamin D during pregnancy and overweight in boys

Vitamin D during pregnancy and overweight in boysDuring a woman’s pregnancy, vitamin D is important for the growth, development, and general health of the baby. Apparently, maternal vitamin D deficiency during pregnancy increases the risk of boys developing more fat tissue during their first years of life, which makes them more prone to overweight in childhood and later in life. This was reported in a Spanish population study that is published in Nutrients. Because both overweight and vitamin D deficiency are so widespread, it is essential for pregnant women to make sure as a minimum to follow the official recommendations for vitamin D supplementation. Also, there is no read to avoid sun exposure because sunshine is our primary vitamin D source during the summer period. Just make sure not to get a sunburn.

Vitamin D during pregnancy protects the baby against eczema

Vitamin D during pregnancy protects the baby against eczemaAtopic dermatitis (eczema) is a widespread problem and a huge burden to both the child and its parents. According to a new study that is published in British Journal of Dermatology, high-dosed vitamin D supplementation of the mother during her pregnancy lowers the child’s risk of developing eczema within its first year of life. The pregnant women in the study got 25 micrograms of vitamin D daily, which is more than twice the amount that is currently recommended to expecting mothers. Health authorities already recommend all-year vitamin D supplementation to children up to the age of four years, so it appears that this measure can offer additional protection against eczema.

Vitamin D supplements help children with autism

Vitamin D supplements help children with autismThere is an increasing amount of science that links lack of vitamin D to autism. In a new study, 109 autistic children were given either a vitamin D supplement or placebo. According to the lead researcher, Dr. Khaled Saad, there was a distinct improvement in autism symptoms such as hyperactivity, social reclusion, and other function impairments in the children who took supplements of vitamin D, but not in the placebo group. The study is published in the Journal of Child Psychology and Psychiatry (2016)­.
It is alarming that many babies are born with a vitamin D deficiency, or become vitamin D deficient later in life. The nutrient controls numerous processes in the brain – including gene control and regulation of serotonin (neurotransmitter) levels and inflammation processes.

Vitamin D supplements may improve fertility in men and women

Vitamin D supplements may improve fertility in men and womenIn May 2017, new data linking vitamin D and fertility was presented at the European Congress of Endocrinology (ECE) in Lisbon. The new findings contribute to our understanding of vitamin D’s impact on male testosterone levels and of our knowledge about whether vitamin D supplements may actually improve fertility in both sexes. Involuntary infertility, a widespread problem, may be a result of many factors, but if the reason is a vitamin D deficiency, it is easy to treat with increased exposure to sunlight and the use of supplements to keep vitamin D levels optimal all year round.

What does vitamin D deficiency mean for a pregnancy and for the child’s health?

What does vitamin D deficiency mean for a pregnancy and for the child’s health?Around one billion people worldwide are believed to lack vitamin D. This gives cause for concern when it comes to public health, also with regard to pregnant women and their children. Several studies link vitamin D deficiency to a number of different pregnancy-related complications such as preeclampsia, increased risk of preterm delivery, and the need for a Caesarean section. There is also a risk of low birth weight, weak bones, and later development of bronchitis, asthma, type 1 diabetes, sclerosis, and autism, according to a review article published in Nutrients. The authors believe it is necessary to give supplements to help correct vitamin D deficiencies in the expecting mothers and even in the children after birth to prevent many of the diseases and complications linked to low vitamin D status.

Widespread nutrient deficiencies among younger adults can harm their fertility and cause them to age faster

Widespread nutrient deficiencies among younger adults can harm their fertility and cause them to age fasterLarge population studies of adults and their diet habits often tend to overlook certain groups such as younger adults. A British study therefore took a closer look at eating habits of adults in their twenties, thirties, forties, and fifties. It revealed a widespread lack of B vitamins, magnesium, potassium, iodine, zinc, and selenium. Being deficient in these essential nutrients can harm your fertility and increase your risk of different diseases, while speeding up concealed ageing processes such as loss of cognition and bone mass.

Zinc deficiencies are a global health problem

- here is a check list of typical signs and diseases

Zinc deficiencies are a global health problemAn estimated two billion people worldwide lack zinc. The essential trace element is involved in more than 1,000 different enzyme processes, besides being a powerful antioxidant that protects the body’s cells. Even minor zinc deficiencies can lead to impaired digestion, infections, skin problems, fatigue, impaired fertility, and DNA damage. Such deficiencies can eventually increase the risk of cancer and other diseases. People with unhealthy diets, vegetarians, vegans, older people, and pregnant and breastfeeding women are at particular risk of lacking zinc. Even if your diet provides sufficient amounts of zinc, different factors can affect the uptake and utilization of the nutrient, thereby increasing your body’s actual need.

Zinc fireworks reveal the quality of the egg and offer new hope for infertile couples

Zinc fireworks reveal the quality of the egg and offer new hope for infertile couplesOnce the sperm cell has penetrated the egg cell, sparks fly from zinc atoms in a fascinating fireworks display. This new discovery may help fertility doctors select the most best eggs for in-vitro fertilization (IVF). The discovery also has relevance for all others who wish a successful pregnancy. It all boils down to having adequate zinc stores in the body.

Zinc offers protection against disease and even protects cellular DNA

– but will enrichment do the trick?

Zinc offers protection against disease and even protects cellular DNA Even minor zinc deficiencies may cause poor digestion, infections, skin problems, and fatigue – and many other diseases may occur along the way. A new study shows that a diet with as little as four extra mg of zinc daily may strengthen cellular DNA and help protect the body. The four milligrams of zinc are about the same as populations with deficiency symptoms can get by eating zinc-enriched wheat and rice.

Zinc, wound healing, skin diseases, and hair loss

Zinc, wound healing, skin diseases, and hair lossOur skin is among the body’s organs that contains the most zinc, and the trace element is of vital importance to the formation and protection of skin cells. A zinc deficiency can therefore contribute to poor wound healing, sensitive skin, acne, eczema and other skin disorders, and hair loss, according to a new study that is published in the scientific journal Nutrients. Although clinical zinc deficiencies are rare in our part of the world, sub-clinical deficiencies are rather common. For instance, vegetarians, pregnant and breastfeeding women, and older people are particularly vulnerable. A large intake of sugar, calcium, and alcohol, the use of birth control pills and several types of medicine, plus certain diseases and other factors can also increase your risk of becoming zinc-deficient.

Zinc’s role in pregnancy and fetal brain development

Zinc’s role in pregnancy and fetal brain developmentZinc is involved in numerous enzyme processes and proteins that are of importance to fertility and pregnancy. The nutrient also plays a role in fetal brain development and the child’s health later in life, according to a review article that is published in the scientific journal, Nutrients. The authors address the fact that zinc deficiencies are rather common and account for around 20 per cent of infant deaths, typically around the time of birth. It is therefore important to get plenty of zinc throughout life – especially for women before, during, and after pregnancy and while they breastfeed.

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