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Teens, Deficient in Vitamin D, May Not have Healthy Lungs and Bones

by Medindia Content Team on May 24, 2006 at 5:07 PM
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Teens, Deficient in Vitamin D, May Not have Healthy Lungs and Bones

A new study has suggested that teenagers who are not taking the necessary quantities of Vitamin D in their diets may end up causing damage to their lungs and bones.

Egg yolks, salt water fish, and milk are some of the natural sources of Vitamin D.Vitamin D helps the body to absorb calcium, which is instrumental in ensuring strong bones. This is an already established theory, but now researches have observed an extension to the former theory- .

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Researcher Jane Burns, ScD, a research fellow in the department of environmental health at the Harvard University School of Public Health, said "Vitamin D is promoted in terms of bone growth, but we also need to think in terms of vitamin D's other effects on the body. It may be that we should be promoting dietary vitamin D intake at recommended levels to ensure optimal lung function as well as to form and maintain healthy bones."

Researchers conducted an analysis of the lung function of 2,112 adolescents in the age group of 12-19 in the U.S. and Canada along with their diets and food preferences. The results of the tests revealed that nearly 35% of the teen's intake of vitamin D was less than 200 IU (international units) of vitamin D per day. 200 IU is the prescribed level of intake by the Institute of Medicine for teens in this age bracket.
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It was also observed that the teens, which portrayed deficient vitamin D levels, had weakened lung function when compared with the other teens who took the recommended intake of vitamin D or higher levels.

According to Burns, "These are adolescents who should have optimal pulmonary function. If they're already showing lower pulmonary function associated with lower vitamin D intake at this age, it may have long-term effects on their health."

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