Duncan Blog

Dr. Eric Duncan Blog

Duncan Chiropractic Group P.C.


Monday, September 20, 2010

Did You Know?

Vitamin D deficiency is widespread among infants and most pediatricians remain unaware of the problem. Only 5 to 13 percent of breast-fed infants receive at least 400 IU of Vitamin D per day, the amount currently recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Human breast milk is actually relatively low in Vitamin D, probably because during our evolutionary history most babies got plenty of exposure to sunlight. An infant would need to drink 32 ounces of fortified formula per day to get 400 IU of Vitamin D, an amount that is probably unrealistic for young children.

The body produces Vitamin D when exposed to UV-B radiation from sunlight. The nutrient is essential for the development and maintenance of bones and the immune system, and deficiency can increase the risk of soft or brittle bones, infection, cancer, heart disease and autoimmune disorders.

It is recommended that infants get no direct sunlight at all for the first six months of life, and that they wear protective clothing and sunscreen beyond that age. This effectively rules out the healthiest, most reliable source of this essential nutrient. Making matters worse, only 1 to 13 percent of children under the age of one take a Vitamin D supplement.

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