Research has delved into the possibility of an individual’s health being linked with the time of year that he or she was born. While there has been no solid evidence to date, scientists in Great Britain may be on the verge of a breakthrough. In the past, only a correlation could be seen between the season that a baby was born and the potential to acquire serious illnesses later in life, such as multiple sclerosis. Recent studies suggest otherwise.
Through a comprehensive study, it has been suggested that babies born in May are at higher risk of being victims of multiple sclerosis as adults. The root of the problem appears to be a deficiency of vitamin D which causes more immune cells to be produced. It is this increased number of immune cells that poses the most risk.
How is Vitamin D Related to Multiple Sclerosis?
It is believed that a low-level of vitamin D in a baby’s system may affect the development of the immune system. A malfunctioning immune system is thought to be to blame for multiple sclerosis, as indicated in research from a multiple sclerosis book (www.mslivingsymptomfree.com/). The immune cells of the body attack the myelin which protects the nerves. As a result, there is scar tissue and deterioration that builds up in the nervous system. Victims of the disease often have loss of motor function, difficulties with speech, problems with vision, and a host of problems because their nervous systems are no longer functioning properly.
Who Might Be at Most Risk of Developing Multiple Sclerosis?
Studies have focused on areas of the world where there is less sunlight in winter because of the prevalence of the disease in those regions. Mothers who live in the Northern hemisphere, especially the most extreme locations, are exposed to less sunlight in the winter months. As a result, they absorb a smaller amount of vitamin D in their systems. It is only natural that babies developing in the womb would also experience a vitamin D deficiency.
In a recent study, blood samples were taken from one hundred babies born in the London area. Scientists focused on the level of vitamin D and the presence of T cells, a type of immune system cell. Babies born in spring, particularly in May, had double the number of immune system cells as compared to those born in November. There was also a considerable difference in vitamin D levels with a twenty percent decrease in spring babies. The increased level of immune cells could pose a threat later in life, causing the immune cells to behave erratically, attacking the myelin in a person’s brain.
More Research is Needed
Nothing is conclusive at this time. A great deal of work needs to be done as more comprehensive studies are performed. Test subjects need to be followed over the course of a lifetime. Meanwhile, MS victims are being advised to take vitamin D in hopes of relieving their symptoms.