Vitamin D deficiency linked to obesity in children

According to a study published in the medical journal Pediatrics, overweight and obese children and teens are more likely to have low levels of vitamin D than youngsters who maintain a normal weight, Medscape reported.

The research was conducted at the University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas by Christy Boling Turer, M.D., M.H.S., and collaborators.

“This is the first study, to our knowledge, to provide nationally representative estimates of the [body mass index]-percentile category-specific prevalence of and risk factors associated with vitamin D deficiency in [six] to 18-year-old U.S. children,” wrote the study’s authors.

Turer and her colleagues examined the instances of vitamin D deficiency in the sample group of participants, each of whom had taken part in the 2003 to 2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

They determined that overweight children were 29 percent more likely to experience vitamin D deficiency and obese youngsters were 34 percent likely. Those within a healthy weight range were 21 percent more likely to be deficient in vitamin D, according to the news source.

Vitamin D is beneficial for the body because it improves the consumption of calcium and phosphorus, the American Academy of Pediatrics reported.

According to the Office of Dietary Supplements of the National Institutes of Health, children under the age of six months should consume 1,000 international units (IU) daily of vitamin D, while those under 12 months old should have about 1,500 IUs per day.

Children under three years old should have 2,500 IUs daily, while those between four and eight years old should consume 3,000 IUs each day. For individuals over the age of nine, 4,000 IUs are the recommended daily amount.

Good sources of vitamin D include cod liver oil, canned tuna fish, orange juice fortified with vitamin D, sardines, swiss cheese and salmon.

In addition to food sources, all-natural supplements by Dr. Newton’s Naturals like Dr. Pinkus’ Sublingual D-3 can be an excellent way to improve vitamin D intake and support overall wellness.