Holistic Healing Center

5812 York Road
PO Box 132
Lahaska, PA 18931

215-794-7880

Holistic Healing Center
The Holistic Healing Center

“Shocking” Lack of Vitamin D in U.S. Kids
© 2023 Health Realizations, Inc. Update

 

The majority of U.S. kids, about 70 percent in all, have low levels of vitamin D, according to data collected on more than 6,000 children ages 1-21.

While too little vitamin D has long been linked to the bone disease rickets, researchers are finding that the vitamin impacts much more than just your bones, vitamin D3 from 20 minutes of sun per day on bare skin areas or via supplements is important for both preventing Covid and recovering from Covid (along with other supplements if deficient like zinc) plus low levels of vitamin D may increase the risk of heart disease, cancer and other illnesses later in life.

The study, which was published in the journal Pediatrics, found that 9 percent, or 7.6 million U.S children, were vitamin D deficient, while another 61 percent, or 50.8 million were vitamin D insufficient.

"We expected the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency would be high, but the magnitude of the problem nationwide was shocking," Dr. Juhi Kumar of Children's Hospital at Montefiore Medical Center said in a LiveScience article.

Why is Vitamin D so Important to Your Health, and to Your Child’s, Health?

Vitamin D is more than just a “vitamin.” In fact, its metabolic product, called calcitriol, is actually a secosteroid hormone that impacts over 2,000 genes in your body, according to the Vitamin D Council. They write:

“Current research has implicated vitamin D deficiency as a major factor in the pathology of at least 17 varieties of cancer as well as heart disease, stroke, hypertension, autoimmune diseases, diabetes, depression, chronic pain, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, muscle weakness, muscle wasting, birth defects, periodontal disease, and more.

Vitamin D's influence on key biological functions vital to one's health and well-being mandates that vitamin D no longer be ignored by the health care industry nor by individuals striving to achieve and maintain a greater state of health.”

Vitamin D has also shown great promise in fighting off the flu, and people who are deficient may be more likely to get infected.

Five studies have shown an inverse relationship between lower respiratory tract infections and 25(OH)D [vitamin D] levels. Simply stated, the higher your vitamin D level, the lower your risk of contracting colds, flu, and other respiratory tract infections.

The link is so promising that the Public Health Agency of Canada began investigating the role of vitamin D in protection against flu including the swine flu.

Why are So Many Kids Lacking in Vitamin D?

Your skin makes vitamin D from sun exposure, and one of the primary reasons why people, including kids, don't get enough is because they're not spending enough time outdoors, or are wearing sunscreen when they do (which blocks vitamin D production).

"Standing outside 15 minutes a day three times a week lets the skin produce enough vitamin D most of the year," says Dr. Michael Holick of Boston University.

Because people with dark-pigmented skin require more time in the sun to produce vitamin D, they are especially at risk of vitamin D deficiency and, consequently, rickets.

Certain foods, such as milk and orange juice, are fortified with vitamin D, but some natural health experts say the form of vitamin D used for fortification is not ideal.

Foods that are naturally rich in vitamin D are fatty fish like salmon and, to a lesser degree, mushrooms, organ meets and egg yolks, but it is difficult to get enough vitamin D from diet alone.

Further, although the American Academy of Pediatrics recently updated its vitamin D guidelines for infants, children, and teens to 400 IU per day in supplement form, many health experts say that amount is still far too low.

“The skin produces approximately 10,000 IU vitamin D in response 20–30 minutes summer sun exposure -- 50 times more than the US government's recommendation of 200 IU per day [for adults]!” states the Vitamin D Council. They continue:

“If well adults and adolescents regularly avoid sunlight exposure, research indicates a necessity to supplement with at least 5,000 units (IU) of vitamin D daily.”

How to Make Sure Your Kids are Getting Enough Vitamin D

Many doctors now recommend getting regular sun exposure to keep your vitamin D levels up. Dr. Michal L. Melamed of the Albert Einstein College of Medicine of Yeshiva University, who led the above study, told LiveScience:

"Just 15 to 20 minutes a day should be enough. And unless they [your children] burn easily, don't put sunscreen on them until they've been out in the sun for 10 minutes, so they get the good stuff but not sun damage."

If you or your child cannot get out in the sun, experts recommend supplementing with a vitamin D3 supplement, which is the same natural vitamin D your body makes when exposed to the sun. Avoid vitamin D2, which is synthetic and may be less safe and less effective.

A Doctor's Office blood test can determine whether your vitamin D levels are high enough. The Vitamin D Council recommends adjusting your dosage so that blood levels are between 50-80 ng/mL (or 125-200 nM/L) year-round.

If you’re a parent to a new baby, keep in mind that researchers have also linked lower levels of vitamin D to breastfed infants who do not receive supplemental vitamin D. If a breastfeeding woman is low in the nutrient, then her breast milk will be as well. So while breastfeeding is still the best choice, experts recommend supplementing babies' diets with vitamin D.


Sources

LiveScience.com

The Vitamin D Council


Dr. Bernstein's Comments

As mentioned in this article, Vitamin D plays many roles in the human body and acts more like a hormone than just a vitamin. In addition to some of the roles discussed, it reduces autoimmunity and improves insulin sensitivity which can help reduce diabetes.

It is important to know your Vitamin D status and we can order a simple blood test. Unfortunately, insurance doesnt always cover the test on a regular basis but we have found some labs that offer competative pricing so that Vitamin D can be properly monitored.

In most cases, some supplementation is recommended and there are liquid and capsule forms. Some people need extra digestive support to adequately absorb this fat soluable vitamin.  Others may need to take more if they are on medications that block absorbtion.

We are here to support you in having optimal levels of Vitamin D because we know how important it is.

Let us know how we can help.

Please Note: Above comment statements are not written by Health Realizations, Inc. nor the opinion of HealthRealizations.com.

Contact Us
Address : 5812 York Road
PO Box 132
Lahaska, PA 18931

Phone : 215-794-7880
Fax : 215-794-7884
 
Website : www.drbholisticmd.com
 
Please call today: 215-794-7880 to make an appointment 
The information and statements contained in this eMagazine article by Health Realizations or any added comments herein have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration and are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease. The contents of this eMagazine article or additional comments are for informational purposes only are is not intended to be a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. Your reliance on any information provided by Health Realizations, its affiliates, content providers, member physicians or employees or comment contributors is solely at your own risk. Always seek the advice of your physician or other qualified health provider with any questions you may have regarding a medical condition. Never disregard professional medical advice, or delay seeking medical advice or treatment, because of information contained in a Health Realizations eMagazine. Health Realizations does not, and cannot, recommend or endorse any specific products, treatments, procedures, tests, physicians or other information that may be mentioned in a Health Realizations eMagazine.

Processing...
Request for an Appointment
Confirmation