Millions of American Children Have Low Vitamin D Levels, Putting Them at Risk for Bone Problems, Heart Disease, Diabetes, and other Ailments

This is the lead in a Washington Post story published Aug. 3, 2009, which summarizes findings from two new studies that provide the first national snapshot of a nutrient whose importance to health has been emphasized by a raft of recent investigations. (Check the entry “Vitamin D” in this blog for some of these other research findings.)

The new studies on Vitamin D come as the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine is reviewing official guidelines for daily intake of Vitamin D. Many researchers in recent years have suggested that the recommended daily intake should be increased, particularly to counteract deficiencies detected in certain groups with chronic conditions.

The national studies, which showed millions of American children deficient in Vitamin D, also highlighted worrisome associations between low Vitamin D levels and high blood pressure, high blood sugar, and “metabolic syndrome,” a condition that increases risk of heart disease and diabetes.

One source of Vitamin D is sunlight–the body manufactures the vitamin in response to exposure to the sun. And the recent research suggests that American children, prone to watch TV and play videogames, may not be getting enough outdoor time and sunlight, leading to the Vitamin D deficiency. Others point out that too much exposure to the sun may lead to higher rates of skin cancer, already the leading type of cancer in the US. Of course–we note–supplementing with Vitamin D could address the deficiency, while also avoiding the increased skin cancer risk that comes with exposure to sun.

See the following product entries on the NYBC website for further information on Vitamin D:

D3-1000 (Jarrow)

D3-400 (Jarrow)

Bone-Up (Jarrow) – includes D3 plus other nutrients important for bone health

Bone-Up – Ultra (Jarrow) – additional nutrients compared to the regular “Bone-Up”, plus a larger quantity

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