What Vitamin D does for Children?

 What Vitamin D does for Children?


Vitamin D is often taught to children as ‘sunshine vitamin’. Many would remember this as a free vitamin. However, there are also a few differences as they reach adulthood. The vitamin has many functions that are just the same for children and adults. However, there are also some points of Vitamin D that should carefully weigh when it is for children.


This vitamin is a fat-soluble vitamin which, when inappropriate amount, can do much good for our body. For example, with the right amount, the body would be able to regulate the amount of calcium and phosphorous in the body as well. Now, aside from this, the vitamin would also control the number of parathyroid hormones to be released in the body.


If children are deficient of the said vitamin, then they are likely to develop rickets. This is manifested through the bowing of the legs. The bones would not develop properly which could permanently damage the entire skeletal structure of the child. This may also extend into adulthood and increase the risk of developing osteoporosis.


On the other hand, children that are exposed to too much Vitamin D also have some bad effects. When there is a high Vitamin D level in the body, it follows that there is also high calcium in the blood. Thus, the excess calcium might settle in the soft tissues of the heart and other organs in the body. Such settlement would decrease the efficiency of the organs and may eventually lead to other complications.


Children’s need for Vitamin D generally increases with age. However, the increase does not take effect until later in life. Thus, from infants up to 50 years old, the amount of need is the same, 5 micrograms per day or in other units 200 IU per day. The need doubles up when a person reaches 50 and then adds up another 100 IU per day when they reach 70 years old. In turn, babies in the wombs should also be supported with the proper amount of Vitamin D.


Children who have darker skin and lives in areas with less sunshine would have a harder time reaching the required amount of Vitamin D. Such is also true for adults. Aside from sun exposure, such circumstances call for more food supplements and other food products with such vitamins to reach the daily requirement.


US’ and Canada’s milk are usually fortified with Vitamin D. This makes up for about 100 IU or 2.5 micrograms per day of the vitamins. Now, this means that two glasses can already fill up the required amount. However, this should also be supplemented with a proper diet. There are many other food and food products that may also contain this vitamin.


Fish products are usually high in Vitamin D because of their sun-exposed algae diets. Among those that have the highest amount are salmons, mackerel, tuna, herring, and catfish. Aside from milk, cheese, margarine, butter, and cereals are also the top source of Vitamin D and all its forms.

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