There is a public health concern in
the United Kingdom – rickets has returned.
Researchers in the UK and the
United States are finding that children are playing on computers instead of
outdoors, limiting their ability to get sufficient vitamin D, in combination
with poor dietary habits.
Rickets is a disease that has been
practically non-existent in developed countries since the early-1900s. US
agency Centres for Disease Control defines nutritional rickets as “a condition
that causes weak or deformed bones in young people.”
According to Simon HS Pearce,
professor of endocrinology, and lead researcher in the study Diagnosis and
management of vitamin D deficiency, vitamin D is essential, as its deficiency
has been associated with cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, several
cancers, and autoimmune conditions for both children and adults.
Most milk in the United States is
fortified with vitamin D but physicians are saying children need double the
vitamin D that they are currently getting. Sunlight is a major source of
vitamin D and since various climates are changing, there are varying degrees of
exposure compounded by the fact that many children today are opting to play
indoors instead of outside.
Some nutritional ways to boost your
child’s vitamin D levels include salmon, tuna, and mackerel and fish liver
oils. Small amounts can also be found in beef liver, cheese, egg yolks, and
Since many of the food containing
vitamin D are not especially kid-friendly you might opt for a cod liver oil
Also encouraging your children to
spend some time outdoors, off the computers, and in the fresh air and sunlight
can also do wonders.