Menu Content/Inhalt

Main Menu

About Dr. Pais
Naturopathic News
Contact Us

Subscribe to Naturopathic News


Lost Password?
No account yet? Register
Dr. Gregory Pais, ND
Find me on Facebook

January 2009, The Journal of Pediatrics
Almost 75% of children and adolescents with Type 1 diabetes have insufficient levels of vitamin D, researchers at the Joslin Diabetes Center in Boston report. A deficit in vitamin D can lead to bone problems later in life, especially among those with type 1 diabetes. Researchers suggest that supplements are needed to boost vitamin D levels. "We found in children with Type 1 diabetes a pretty significant level of vitamin D insufficiency -- much more than we had expected to find," said lead researcher Dr. Britta Svoren. Moreover, many children throughout the world without type 1 diabetes have vitamin D deficiency, Svoren said.

Diabetes is associated with a reduction in bone mineral density, which can make bones more fragile, Vitamin D deficiency can increase the risk of fracture in these children later in life. In addition, vitamin D may have a role in the risk for developing type 1 diabetes.

For the study, Svoren's team measured vitamin D levels in 128 children with Type 1 diabetes. The children were between 1.5 and 17.5 years old. The researchers found that 61% of the children had insufficient levels of vitamin D, and 15% had a deficiency in vitamin D, meaning their vitamin D levels were severely low. In fact, only 24% of the children had sufficient vitamin D levels. The lowest vitamin D levels were seen among the oldest children. Among adolescents, 85% had inadequate levels of the vitamin.

"One of the things that might be going on is that, for a lot of children and adolescents, the primary source of vitamin D is through vitamin D-fortified milk," Svoren said. "The problem is that a lot of teenagers with type 1 diabetes, rather than drinking milk, a lot of these individuals are probably drinking increased amounts of sugar-free colas."

Dr. David L. Katz, director of the Prevention Research Center at Yale University School of Medicine, said that vitamin D is important for all children. "A growing body of research suggests the importance of vitamin D in many aspects of health, far beyond the long-established role in bone development and preservation," Katz said. "But the role of vitamin D in bone health remains crucial, and perhaps that much more so in groups at high risk of bone-thinning and injury. Such groups include postmenopausal women, those with kidney disease, and children with type 1 diabetes."

I'm pleased to see so much awareness developing regarding Vitamin D and health. However, Both Katz and Svoren do a disservice by recommending 400IU Vitamin D daily. This is an absurdly small amount of Vitamin D. If they had proper training in nutrition they would know that, to replete Vitamin D properly and have it at therapeutic levels, a few thousand IUs per day would be necessary. Of course, correct testing could direct supplementation and help ensure creation of optimum levels.