Type II diabetes is becoming more common as obesity rates in America continue to increase. Children and teens across the country struggle to control their blood sugar levels, which puts them at risk of developing the disease. But what if there was another factor affecting the blood sugar of these kids that we've been missing?
University of Missouri researchers have recently found a trend in 35 pre-diabetic obese children who were all receiving treatment in the MO Adolescent Diabetic Obesity Program. Each one of them had insufficient or deficient vitamin D levels, along with similar diet and activity levels. The participants were either given a high vitamin D supplement or a placebo which they took every day for six months. Those who took the vitamin D supplements alone received a response nearly as powerful as what the researchers have seen using a prescription drug. The participants had a decrease in insulin levels which led to better glucose control without changing their body weight, dietary intake, or physical activity.
It hasn't been recommended for obese children and adolescents to take the dosage of vitamin D distributed in the study, but rather take a deficiency test and determine if that is a factor which may be contributing to a risk of diabetes. If so, they should take the recommended amount of vitamin D supplements as a natural and inexpensive way to reduce their risk of developing the disease and lower their blood sugar. Vitamin D deficiency is common, but it affects those who are obese more. This is because they process vitamin D up half as efficiently as normal-weight people. Vitamin D isn't processed as easily because it gets stored in fat tissues, which means they need to consume more than others to maintain the right level of vitamin D.
Many patients suffer through the side effects of their prescription drugs, and the fact that vitamin D is healthy for your body makes it a much better choice. I think this is a breakthrough especially since there is a natural way to correct the deficiency and lower blood sugar. Vitamin D also helps maintain healthy bones, muscles and nerves, and can be obtained by just playing outside for a little while per day!
Lindsey Dugas (1)