London: Women should take up to 10 times the current recommended dose of vitamin D during pregnancy, experts have said after it was found to cut premature birth by half.
In Britain pregnant women and breastfeeding mothers are recommended to take 10 micrograms of vitamin D daily, but a study has suggested higher doses may be more beneficial, reports telegraph.co.uk.
The team from University of South Carolina found the women taking the highest dose were 50 percent less likely to suffer from problems, including premature labour, gestational diabetes and infections, than those on the lowest dose.
Carol Wagner, lead author of the study said: "The spectacular part of the study was it showed women replete in vitamin D had lower rates of preterm labour and preterm birth, and lower rates of infection."
Wagner also added that the results showed the high dose was safe and effective so they could recommend all pregnant women take 1,000 micrograms of vitamin D daily.
It has been estimated that two in 10 adults in Britain could be deficient in vitamin D.
Vitamin D is found in foods like fortified cereals, eggs and fish but most people also need around 15 minutes of sunshine three times a week to ensure sufficient levels.