According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, nearly one in five residents in nursing homes suffer from anemia, which is a nutritional disorder defined by low hemoglobin levels.
However, many American children also battle this condition, which is characterized by fatigue, lightheadedness and low energy. A new study reveals that vitamin D deficiency may be the cause of anemia in kids.
The findings, which were presented at the annual meeting of the Pediatric Academic Societies on May 1 in Denver, are based on experiments conducted by pediatricians from the John Hopkins Children’s Center. In a study of 9,400 children between the ages 2 and 18, the team found that lower vitamin D levels were connected to a low hemoglobin count.
Children who had vitamin D levels below 20 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml) of blood had a 50 percent higher risk for anemia than participants with levels above 20 ng/ml.
According to FitDay.com, children can increase their vitamin D intake by eating certain foods, such as salmon, eggs and cereal. In addition, orange juice and certain types of milk are fortified with substantial amounts of vitamin D.
Anemia that goes untreated can lead to severe damage of an individual’s vital organs as a result of oxygen deprivation.