Taking the right amount of Vitamin D is extremely important for everyone and more so for babies.
It’s a great way to tap into the power of nature and explore natural surroundings. While baby skin is extremely sensitive and can burn easily, yet there is no better way to consume Vitamin D than direct sun exposure (newborns should take indirect sunlight to even bring down jaundice).
Paediatricians prescribe taking in at least 400 IU of Vit D daily through supplements like Sunsips/Vitanova/Uprise etc., which is a must given our lifestyle of minimal sun exposure, but nothing beats the power of the sun. Countries with ample sunshine and a nature-driven lifestyle don’t experience vitamin D related deficiencies.
Why is Vitamin D required for babies?
Vitamin D, also known as the sunshine vitamin, can be produced in the body with mild sun exposure or consumed in food or supplements. It has multiple roles in the body, like maintain the health of bones and teeth, and supporting the health of the immune system, brain and nervous system.
Vit D is required to absorb Calcium & phosphorus in the body, which are needed to build and maintain bones. The lack of it leads to lactose intolerance even to mother’s milk, meanwhile, the insufficient amount of Vitamin D can lead to rickets (brittle bones).
How much Vitamin D is required?
Direct exposure to the sun is required for 10 minutes each day for fair skin and slightly longer for wheatish skin. The skin should be directly exposed to the sun. It cannot permeate clothes and glass windows.
How to keep the baby safe in the sun?
Babies should not get direct sunlight in their eyes since their eyes are very sensitive. You can try to turn the baby away from the sun so that their lower half gets maximum sun exposure. Ensure baby is well hydrated to be able to sit in the sun for these 10mins. Best time for sun-bathing is between 9:30-11:30 am.
This article was contributed by our partner Little Mister Trouble and has been published with permission.