By Sysy Morales on May 24th, 2016, as published in Diabetes Daily and reported by Sysy Morales, vitamin D deficiency is again being linked to diabetes, this time in children with Type 1 diabetes. A recent study done at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing found a high prevalence of a large population of children with Type 1 diabetes to be deficient in the vitamin.
The study sought to check out the relationship between vitamin D and blood sugar management in children and teens with Type 1 diabetes. Known as the “sunshine vitamin”. Vitamin D is a fat-soluble steroid hormone that the body makes when skin is exposed to ultraviolet radiation (UV rays). It is thought to play a large role in autoimmune health. Other than being created in the skin when in sunshine, some vitamin D can come from the diet, as it’s found in foods such as full-fat dairy products, egg yolks, oily fish and specifically cod liver oil.
The researchers used non-fasting blood samples to measure 25-hydroxyvitamin D and blood sugar levels in the participating 197 children and teens of which 23% were overweight and 13% obese (being overweight or obese increases risk for low vitamin D). The researchers found 41% of the participants had a deficiency.
Dr. Terri Lipman, the senior study author, said: “To our knowledge this is the first study that has been adequately-powered to examine the association between 25-hydroxyvitamin D and HbA1c (a measure of diabetes control) in children and adolescents with Type 1 diabetes,” and added, “These data suggest the need for monitoring of vitamin D in all youth with this disorder.”
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