Vitamin D Deficiency in Kids May Lead to Heart Risks

   |  Updated: February 12, 2015 13:46 IST

Vitamin D Deficiency in Kids May Lead to Heart Risks

Popularly known as the 'sunshine vitamin', Vitamin D is one of the most important elements for our body's development. From maintaining healthy bones and teeth to regulating the absorption of calcium in body, Vitamin D is absolutely essential! Lack of this vitamin may lead to serious repercussions including weaker bones, exposure to risks of cardiovascular diseases and many other ailments.

A latest study published in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism explains that Vitamin D deficiency can pose a serious threat to your child as well. Vitamin D is crucial in a child's overall development and its deficiency can hamper proper bone development and obstruct calcium absorption. Health experts also suggest that in a few cases vitamin D deficiency may lead to rickets and bone deformities in children. Apart from this, low levels of this vitamin may lead to a disrupted immune system and cell production as well.

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A team of researchers further studied the adverse effects of Vitamin D deficiency on kids. It was found that low levels of vitamin D in childhood were associated with subclinical atherosclerosis over 25 years later in adulthood. The study examined the link between low vitamin D levels in childhood and an increased carotid intima-thickness (IMT) in adults. In simple words, an increase in carotid intima-thickness (IMT) in adults correlates to structural atherosclerosis which further associates with cardiovascular diseases.


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"Our results showed an association between low vitamin D levels in childhood and increased occurrence of subclinical atherosclerosis in adulthood," said one of the authors Markus Juonala from University of Turku Finland.

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"The association was independent of conventional cardiovascular risk factors including serum lipids, blood pressure, smoking, diet, physical activity, obesity indices and socioeconomic status," Juonala added.

For the study, the team studied 2,148 participants ageing between 3-18 years at baseline. The participants were re-examined at age 30-45 years. The study concluded that those with low levels of vitamin D in childhood had a significantly higher prevalence of high-risk IMT as adults, therefore such participants were more susceptible to risks of cardiovascular diseases.


Inputs from IANS

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Tags:  Vitamin D