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A Journal on Pediatrics, Neonatology, Adolescent Medicine,
Child and Adolescent Psychiatry

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Minerva Pediatrica 2011 February;63(1):11-8

language: English

Vitamin D status in a group of Spanish schoolchildren

Rodríguez-Rodríguez E., Aparicio A., López-Sobaler A. M., Ortega R. M.

Department of Nutrition, Faculty of Pharmacy, Complutense University, Madrid, Spain


AIM: The aim was to determine the vitamin D status of a group of Spanish schoolchildren in order to help in the design of campaigns to prevent vitamin D deficiency in this subpopulation.
METHODS: This was a cross-sectional observational study, carried out in schools in Madrid (Spain), during 2007-2008. The study enrolled 102 schoolchildren (aged 9-13 years). Vitamin D intake was monitored using a three-day food record. All foods consumed were converted into energy and nutrients and the vitamin D intake compared to that recommended. The children’s serum 25-OH-cholecalciferol (25[OH]D) concentrations were also recorded.
RESULTS: Vitamin D intake (2.83±3.27 mg/day) was below that recommended in 86.9% of the children, and the serum 25(OH)D concentration (49.6±15.9 nmol/L) below 50 nmol/L (moderate deficit) in 51% of the children; in 8% it was below 30 nmol/L (severe deficit). The children who showed a coverage of at least 67% of the recommended intake of vitamin D (Group HD) consumed more dairy products, fish, fruit and vegetables than those whose intakes covered <67% of the recommended intake (Group LD). The HD children had higher serum 25(OH)D concentrations than the LD children; in addition, fewer cases of deficit were seen among them.
CONCLUSION: The vitamin D status of the studied children was likely to improve, and could be ameliorated via a relatively increased consumption of dairy products, fish, cereals, fruits and vegetables, by including foods fortified in vitamin D if necessary, and by increased ‑ but safe ‑ exposure to the sun.

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