Breast-fed babies need Vitamin D supplements
April 30th, 2013
03:32 PM ET

Breast-fed babies need Vitamin D supplements

Most new moms aim to breast-feed their babies - a practice encouraged by experts who tout the many health benefits of breast milk.

But breast milk is not perfect when it comes to vitamin D. A new study published Tuesday in a special edition of the Journal of the American Medical Association focusing on child health reiterates that breast-fed babies also need a vitamin D supplement.

The current recommendations to give babies being fully or partially breast-fed 400 IU, or International Units, of vitamin D each day "is quite satisfactory," said lead study author and registered dietitian Hope Weiler of McGill University in Canada.

In 2011, the Institute of Medicine also recommended 400 IU of vitamin D as being beneficial to infants, from newborns to babies up to 12 months - or even beyond.

But most babies who are breast-fed do not receive enough, because most new parents aren't giving their babies vitamin D supplements, according to Dr. Steven Abrams, a professor of pediatrics at Baylor College of Medicine and author of an accompanying editorial published in JAMA.

Abrams, who is also a member of the nutrition committee of the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), says only about 10 to 20% of babies who are breast-fed are also given vitamin D.

"We know very well if you don't have enough vitamin D, you can develop rickets as an infant or young child," Weiler said at a news conference on Tuesday. Rickets is a disorder which leads to softening and weakening of the bones.

Vitamin D is essential for growing healthy bones because it helps the body absorb calcium - without enough calcium, bone production may suffer.

Our bodies have the ability to produce vitamin D when our skin is directly exposed to the sun. However, you can't be wearing sunscreen to make this happen and babies younger than 6 months shouldn't be in the sun anyway - according to the AAP and FDA, 6 months is the earliest sunscreen should be applied to babies.

Babies who are exclusively breast-fed or even partially breast-fed are unlikely to get enough vitamin D because their mothers may lack it. Babies who are formula-fed usually receive enough vitamin D because the government requires that it be included in formula.

"A daily exposure of vitamin D intake of 400 IU per day has been demonstrated for almost 100 years to reliably prevent rickets in infants regardless of sunshine exposure or race," writes Abrams in the editorial.

Back in the 1920s, when the recommendations were first established, vitamin D supplements came in the form of a teaspoon of cod liver oil. These days, you can buy a bottle of the supplement and give your baby the recommended amount with an eye dropper.

It's hard to quantify how many babies get rickets because reporting is not required in the United States, but pediatricians like Abrams say they are seeing more cases: "'There's been a mini-epidemic of rickets in the U.S.," he says.

There doesn't appear to be strong pediatrician support for the recommendations, he says, and new parents may not be aware of the recommendation. In addition, families on a tight budget may need to be convinced that buying an over-the-counter vitamin D supplement is important.

A quick survey of some national pharmacy and retail chains shows a bottle of vitamin D drops for infants costs about $9 to $12. That could be a hardship for families on public assistance, which is why Abrams has suggested over the years that it may be worth making these supplements part of public assistance.

soundoff (294 Responses)
  1. FgnsZisse

    5mg of cialis non prescription cialis cialis tablets australia

    December 11, 2020 at 22:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. FbsbEncox

    cheap cialis pills men best price cialis cialis in malaysia

    December 12, 2020 at 00:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. KhedMile

    flavor viagra generic viagra without prescription generica viagra

    December 12, 2020 at 22:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. JgsvCrulk

    viagra on without insurance best price for generic viagra how long does viagra 100mg last?

    December 13, 2020 at 03:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. FqbfEncox

    next day delivery cialis generic cialis tadalafil 20mg cialis without persriction

    December 13, 2020 at 10:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. DvnjZisse

    365 pills viagra cialis professional lowest priced generic viagra master card viagra online no prescription

    December 13, 2020 at 12:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. bitcoin to paypal

    Transfer from bitcoin to paypal very fast and low cost.


    December 15, 2020 at 20:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. FhsnZisse

    how to get viagra with no prescription free viagra online without prescription viagra brand name

    December 16, 2020 at 21:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. Married

    Vitamin D doesn t always pass through breastmilk. Nutritionally, you might think that because you re taking a prenatal or vitamin D supplement, that it ll pass through your breastmilk to your baby. But this isn t always the case. It s hard to measure or know how much vitamin D your baby is actually getting.

    December 18, 2020 at 08:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Marlon Demyan

    Hello! I just wanted to ask if you ever have any trouble with hackers? My last blog (wordpress) was hacked and I ended up losing a few months of hard work due to no backup. Do you have any solutions to prevent hackers?


    December 19, 2020 at 20:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. vreyrolinomit

    Hello there, just became alert to your blog through Google, and found that it's really informative. I am gonna watch out for brussels. I will appreciate if you continue this in future. Numerous people will be benefited from your writing. Cheers!


    December 24, 2020 at 19:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Nilsa Mok

    Thanks for the marvelous posting! I genuinely enjoyed reading it, you happen to be a great author.I will be sure to bookmark your blog and may come back someday. I want to encourage that you continue your great posts, have a nice weekend!


    December 26, 2020 at 23:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. Spencer Auxilien

    some times its a pain in the ass to read what website owners wrote but this site is rattling user genial! .


    December 31, 2020 at 09:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. vreyro linomit

    I got good info from your blog


    December 31, 2020 at 09:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. FgvdZisse

    24 hour drug store sex ed best canadian pharmacy

    January 9, 2021 at 07:15 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. AqwsEncox

    cvs drugstore best drugstore eye cream erectile

    January 9, 2021 at 20:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. JtmfEncox

    ed global pharmacy canada pharmacy orlando

    January 11, 2021 at 05:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. NllpZisse

    rx pharmacy coupons http://pharmacy-onlineasxs.com/ canada pharmacy reviews

    January 12, 2021 at 23:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. LokuEncox

    the people's pharmacy canada drugs indian pharmacy online

    January 13, 2021 at 06:12 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. KhthMile

    the people's pharmacy best drugstore highlighter best online canadian pharmacy

    January 13, 2021 at 07:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. FgnhZisse

    prescription viagra australia viagra heartburn viagra paypal australia online viagra in australia viagra online sydney viagra australian viagra 25 mg online buy viagra online mastercard where to bye viagra how much is a bottle of viagra buy viagra super force viagra man walmart without prescription pharmacist viagra\\ viagra para hombres cheap viagra express shipping

    January 13, 2021 at 11:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. NlbxZisse

    femal viagra buy generic viagra mastercard does viagra make you last longer where to buy viagra in new york viagra online order mastercard accepted viagra onlie where can i find the best and cheapest overnight viagra? viagra and cialis viagra plus dapoxetine online viagra australia buy viagra online overnight delivery buy viagra online viagra pfizer viagra online overnight shipping viagra w uk

    January 17, 2021 at 02:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. JvcxCrulk

    dapoxetine and viagra where to buy viagra in bangkok i do like to buy viagra from usa viagra no prescription cialis viagra on sale viagra ontario viagra 100 viagra online to australia viagra, dapoxetine red viagra 100 mg viagra viagra on line viagra canada office how much does viagra cost australia walgreens over the counter viagra

    January 17, 2021 at 15:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. KlioMile

    where can you buy viagra with paypal? brand viagra with dapoxetine buy viagra super force purchasing viagra onlime where to get generic viagra buy viagra i want to buy viagra online generic viagras walmart viagra price paypal viagra no prescription generic viagra uk next day delivery viagra cialis melbourne site:au viagra 100 mg tablet viagra in calgary viagra boots

    January 18, 2021 at 09:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. FbdhZisse

    generic cialis pills buy cialis paypal levitra vs cialis vs viagra http://21cialismen.com/ – cialis 10 mg ’

    January 18, 2021 at 12:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. AqbvEncox

    when does the patent on viagra end? vgeneric viagra viagra united states http://acialaarx.com/ – where to buy viagra with discover card ’

    January 19, 2021 at 15:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. JbdcEncox

    woman viagra viagra online overnight delivery viagra cialis on line parmacy http://llviabest.com/ – viagraaustralia ’

    January 20, 2021 at 23:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. NlbxZisse

    cialis store in korea cialis superactive cialis online/canada http://cialijomen.com/ – cialisВ® ’

    January 22, 2021 at 02:35 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. JvcbxCrulk

    cheapest cialis 5mg cialis results cialis on line sell http://phrcialiled.com/ – cialis. ’

    January 22, 2021 at 09:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. LcxEncox

    female viagra uk buy viagra on oine viagra online canada paypal http://genqpviag.com/ – herbal viagra duro ’

    January 22, 2021 at 21:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. KbctMile

    cialis buy cialis drugs cialis 36 canada http://mycialedst.com/ – canadian pharmacy cialis brand ’

    January 22, 2021 at 23:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. FbgZisse

    viagra next day delivery paypal viagra no prescription walmart viagra price https://canadianpharmacy-usx.com/organic.htm – where do you buy viagra ’

    January 23, 2021 at 08:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. AhmdEncox

    cialis soft cialis sell viagra vs levitra vs cialis reviews http://cialmenshoprx.com/ – cialis paypal pay with ’

    January 24, 2021 at 09:47 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. FmfvEncox

    cialis 10 mg cialis black pills to buy cialis generic http://sjcialis.com/ – levitra vs cialis ’

    January 26, 2021 at 09:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. JnhCrulk

    original cialis product dapoxetine canadian pharmacy cialis cialis results http://loncialis.com/ – buy brand name cialis ’

    January 26, 2021 at 17:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. NmilZisse

    viagra paypal australia online viagra sales new zealand where to buy viagra in us overnight delivery http://xz-pharmacyonline.com/en/career-opportunities.html – buy viagra in ireland ’

    January 26, 2021 at 22:26 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. KbbtMile

    cialis 20mg Coreg generic cialis 10 mg price cheap https://xz-pharmacyonline.com – Prothiaden ’

    January 27, 2021 at 07:54 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. Andres Tubaugh

    Do you want get more social network traffic, likes, and retweets? SMM Supreme uses his own panel system to generate social media traffic to any website. Best Quality-Price Ratio on the market with 714928 orders until now. – Facebook Fan Page Likes: $4.50/1000 – Instagram Followers: $0.78/1000 – Youtube Views: $1.62/1000 – Twitter followers: $2.10/1000 – Paypal Deposit – Payeer Deposit – Automatic order processing – 30 minutes to send to customers


    January 28, 2021 at 00:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. FhnhZisse

    Prometrium discount pharmacies Avana https://canadianpharmacy-yy.com/ – online discount pharmacy ’

    January 28, 2021 at 13:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. AhmdEncox

    cialis doesn\'t work? canadian pharmacy no prescription needed cheap cialis super active https://impotencecdny.com/ – discount pharmaceuticals ’

    January 29, 2021 at 16:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. FmnfEncox

    really really cheap cialis cialis online from canada cialis generic 20mg https://impotencecdny.com/info/history.php – cialis with dapoxetine for sale ’

    January 31, 2021 at 16:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. JnscCrulk

    buy daily viagra from canada viagra brand name without prescription viagra switzerland http://erectilejyzd.com/index.php?called=terms – brand viagra usa ’

    January 31, 2021 at 23:43 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. NgscZisse

    viagra for females how much is female viagra pill buy generic viagra online australia http://canadianpharmacy-yy.com/Fitness/how-to-get-a-six-pack.html – price of viagra per pill ’

    February 1, 2021 at 04:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. KbbgMile

    viagra 20mg canada canadian drugs pharmacy truth behind generic viagra http://erectilejyzd.com/ – Effexor ’

    February 1, 2021 at 13:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. KbcxMile

    canadian drugs online pharmacies modafinil online pharmacy online pharmacy reviews

    February 4, 2021 at 15:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. Quality Twitter Retweets

    I found your weblog web site on google and check a couple of of your early posts. Proceed to maintain up the excellent operate. I simply further up your RSS feed to my MSN News Reader. In search of ahead to reading extra from you afterward!…


    February 4, 2021 at 23:37 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Kuikseelt

    answers to get viagra buy viagra on line sex shoping viagra

    February 5, 2021 at 02:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. AqcfTeneseelt

    cialis uk supplier cialisfree pills cialis mit paypal bezahlen

    February 5, 2021 at 07:33 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. NncsZisse

    viagra price viagra with dapoxetine online no prescription online pharmacy

    February 6, 2021 at 08:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. AhkdEncox

    viagra pharmacy 100mg pharmacy tech canadian pharmacy drugs online

    February 6, 2021 at 13:27 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6

Leave a Reply to Quality Twitter Retweets


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.