Pregnant women who do not get enough vitamin D risk their child having language problems later in life, a study by the Telethon Institute for Child Health Research claims.

The research showed that women with the lowest levels of the vitamin in the second trimester were twice as likely to have a child with language difficulties as women with the highest concentrations.

A quarter of the pregnant women assessed were found to have less-than-adequate vitamin D levels while they were expecting.

Leader of the research, associate professor Andrew Whitehouse, explained that vitamin D levels in women have declined over the past 20 years.

"The developing baby is completely reliant on the mother for its vitamin D levels and what we have shown is that this might have an impact on the child's brain development," he commented.

Previous studies have shown that insufficiency during pregnancy is linked to various health problems, including restricted growth and asthma.

This, however, is one of the first research projects to consider the link with language problems.

Mr Whitehouse continued: "These are more severe language problems in school years, because while we know 12 per cent of toddlers have language delays, many of them resolve by the time they get to school."

However, for youngsters whose problems continue into their school years, they tend to remain for pretty much the rest of their lives.

Vitamin D is an essential part of everyday life for adults and children alike, but is often not naturally found in many foods.

In many cases people choose to take a supplement instead, such as Nature's Way Kids Smart Complete, which contains multivitamins including vitamin D.

Not only does it aid children's growth and development, but also can help boost their performance at school.

Products such as omega-3 fish oil are also a great way to boost kids' brain function and learning power once they get to school.

Nature's Way Kids Smart Fish Oil is fruit-flavoured and therefore great for children who do not like fish, as well as being easy to chew.

Omega-3 fatty acids are known to have a range of health benefits, including helping to reduce the risk of heart disease, arthritis and cancer in later life.

It is also possible that children with attention deficit hyperactivity disorder may have low levels of certain essential fatty acids, which can be boosted by taking omega-3 fish oil.