The importance of Vitamin D in Reproduction Treatment

Recent studies indicate that women with high levels of Vitamin D will have greater chances of having children.

Vitamina DOptimal nutritional status in women during the preconception phase and adequate intake of all essential nutrients are both very important when it comes to boosting fertility as well as in the evolution of a pregnancy.

Among these nutrients, we would particularly like to mention the role played by Vitamin D for two reasons:  there is growing evidence concerning its implication in male and female fertility, and there is also a high prevalence of low Vitamin D levels in women trying to get pregnant or women undergoing assisted reproduction treatment.

We can obtain Vitamin D by consuming foods that are a source of this vitamin: dairy products, oily fish, egg yolks, etc.; or by synthesising it in our skin after exposure to sunlight (UVB). It is estimated that 50% of the general population is at-risk for low levels of Vitamin D, especially in cases of inadequate Vitamin D intake, poor intestinal absorption, medication intake or insufficient exposure to sunlight.

Vitamin D is essential to bone metabolism and to the absorption of Calcium and Phosphorus in the intestines, but this vitamin also affects different organs, including anti-inflammatory and immunomodulatory effects on the pancreas, the brain, the cardiovascular system and the reproductive system.

There are studies that indicate a link between Vitamin D and the quality of eggs and embryos. However, the explanation that is most strongly supported by science is the one that associates this micronutrient with the immune processes in embryo implantation.

Recent research, such as a study carried out by the University of Birmingham published in Human Reproduction, associates Vitamin D with higher live birth rates in women undergoing assisted reproduction treatment. These studies show that women with adequate blood levels of Vitamin D (>30mg/ml) had greater chances of having a pregnancy that resulted in a live birth than women who had insufficient (20-30 mg/ml) or deficient (<20mg/ml) blood Vitamin D levels.

With all this information, we could conclude that it would be advisable for patients to have adequate levels of Vitamin D before beginning fertility treatment in order to favour embryo implantation. The recommended Vitamin D intake is 400 IU a day; thus, if this intake level is not being met, additional Vitamin D should be given, always under a doctor’s supervision, until clinical trials no longer confirm the benefits of a supplement. Try it.

Posted in Assisted Reproduction, Fertility

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