|TEENAGERS AND VITAMIN D|
March 11 2009 American Heart Association Conference
It appears that Vitamin D is just as important for teenagers as it is for their parents, if not more so. This new research in teenagers shows that low levels of vitamin D lead to high blood pressure and high blood sugar. When considering prevention of heart disease and diabetes in teenagers, Vitamin D must be investigated.
The teens in the study with the lowest vitamin D levels were more than 2x as likely to have high blood pressure and high blood sugar. They were also 4x more likely to have metabolic syndrome, defined as having three or more conditions that contribute to heart disease and diabetes - including high blood pressure, high blood sugar, big waists and high cholesterol.
The teen study looked at about 3,600 boys and girls ages 12 to 19 who took part in a government health survey from 2001 to 2004. The researchers used measurements of vitamin D from blood tests. None of the teens were getting enough vitamin D. Whites had the highest levels, blacks had the lowest levels and Mexican-Americans had levels in between.
The study's leader, Jared Reis of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, said, "We're showing strong associations that need to be followed up."
This highlights how behind the science the recent American Academy of Pediatrics recommendation of 400IU Vitamin D per day is. This amount will do nothing to address high blood pressure and diabetes concerns. Any at risk teenager should have a Vitamin D test done and if their levels aren't optimum, 50-70 ng/ml, appropriate action should be taken.
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