Vitamin D3: Clinical Overview and Applications from 10 Years of Research Reviews

Murray Clarke, Katherine Cole, Adam Sutter

Abstract

This review addresses research over the last decade on vitamin D status in the global pediatric population and advancements to the understanding of extra-skeletal benefits of vitamin D. Research over the last decade reveals the majority of infants and children in Europe, Asia, and the United States do not meet standards for sufficient vitamin D levels. Diet and cutaneous synthesis are not consistently reliable to maintain healthy vitamin D levels, especially in winter months at high latitudes. Recent studies which unveil the scope of vitamin D as a vitamin and steroid hormone stretches far beyond the benefits to skeletal health and calcium homeostasis. Receptors for vitamin D have been found throughout the body and brain, suggesting numerous essential and vital functions for vitamin D. The last decade of scientific studies has provided associations between clinical disorders afflicting the pediatric population and low vitamin D levels. Insufficiencies have been linked to various health conditions including asthma, allergies, dermatitis and autism. Vitamin D supplementation has been used therapeutically to significantly reduce seizure occurrence in epileptics, as well as symptoms of autism in children.

Conclusion – The high prevalence of vitamin D insufficiency around the world and the studied conditions associated with insufficiencies, as well as the positive outcome of supplementation therapy, stress the importance of maintaining adequate vitamin D levels. Supplementation with vitamin D3 is the most advisable way to ensure adequate amounts daily.

Keywords

Vitamin D; Deficiency; Children; Supplementation; VDR

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