A different look at a key nutrient

. February 11, 2013.

Vitamin D deficiency has long been linked to illnesses like rickets and other bone deficiencies. A new study from the University of Michigan also suggests a link between insufficient vitamin D and increased risk of childhood obesity. The new study, by epidemiologist Eduardo Villamor of U of M’s School of Public Health, measured vitamin D levels in children from ages five to 12. Villamor then tracked the links between lowered levels of vitamin D and common indicators of body fat. Low vitamin D was associated with increased abdominal fat, which in turn is associated with increased risk of type two diabetes and heart disease. Most people get adequate vitamin D from direct sunlight, or from artificially fortified foods. But this new science shows one more reason to be vigilant.