Teenagers who are overweight or obese require more vitamin D in the form of supplements, sun exposure, or foods like milk, sardines, and fortified orange juice, a new study has found. Relaxnews reports on the University of Missouri-Columbia study, which found that obese teens absorb vitamin D into their fat stores rather than their bloodstream, which makes it more difficult for them to metabolize.
Vitamin D deficiency is one of the most common deficiencies among Americans, although there is ongoing debate over what the best levels are for children and adults alike. The Institute of Medicine, the health arm of the National Academy of Sciences, recommends a standard supplement of 600 IUs of vitamin D for most Americans, especially those who live in northern or chronically cloudy areas.
"If obese adolescents only consumed the recommended 600 IUs, they would be in trouble," said study author Catherine Peterson in a statement. "It takes 4,000 IUs to raise their vitamin D status within a sufficient range...This indicates that physicians need to carefully evaluate the vitamin D status in their overweight and obese patients."
Vitamin D helps the body absorb both calcium and phosphorous, which is crucial to maintain healthy bones in both growing children and aging adults. Those with severe vitamin D deficiencies may also report chronic fatigue, cognitive impairment, and asthma in children.
(image via: http://naturalnews.com/)