Vitamin D Newsletter

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American children vitamin D deficient

Most teenagers deficient

 Vitamin D-deficient American teenagers are at increased risk of obesity, hypertension, elevated blood sugar, and metabolic syndrome.

Most American teenagers are Vitamin D deficient and low levels in teenagers are associated with teenage hypertension, obesity, and metabolic syndrome

Researchers at Johns Hopkins and the NIH (led by Dr. Jared Reis) looked at 3500 American teenagers and found teenagers with the lowest Vitamin D levels, compared to the highest, were 5 times more likely to be obese, 2.5 times more likely to be hypertensive, 2.5 times more likely to have elevated blood sugar, and about 4 times more likely to have the metabolic syndrome. Only 25% of the teenagers had levels higher than 26 ng/mL while 25% had levels lower than 15 ng/mL.

What upset me the most about this study was that the authors did not conclude teenage Vitamin D deficiency should be treated; they concluded scientists should be given more money to study the deficient teenagers: "Additional research is necessary..." and "evidence from randomized controlled trials is required before Vitamin D supplementation can be recommended..." One fourth of American teenagers with levels less than 15 ng/mL and Dr. Reis, the NIH, and Johns Hopkins doesn't think anything should be done but give scientists more money? Email Dr. Reis and tell him what you think: [email protected]

Failure of US pediatricians

 Vitamin D-deficient American children are more likely to have abnormal blood lipids, high blood pressure, obesity, and abnormally-elevated parathyroid hormone levels, all risks for future cardiovascular disease.

58 million American children are Vitamin D deficient; 7.6 million are severely deficient and nobody is doing anything about it.

Dr. Jahi Kumar and colleagues at Albert Einstein School of Medicine looked at more than 6,000 American kids (age one to 21) who were carefully selected to be representative of the average American child. Nine percent of the kids had 25(OH)D levels less than 15 ng/mL and 70% (representing 58 million kids) had levels less than 30 ng/mL. The older, blacker, or heavier the child, the more TV and video games, the higher the chance the child is deficient. Tragically, 59% of black teenage girls had levels less than 15 ng/mL.

Children with low levels were more likely to have abnormal blood lipids, high blood pressure, obesity, and abnormally-elevated parathyroid hormone levels, all risks for future cardiovascular disease. Only 4% of American children take recommended doses of Vitamin D supplements, surely a failure of U.S. pediatricians.

Page last edited: 11 June 2011