Tuesday, November 9

Vitamin D and....childhood obesity?

As we try to make our way through the complex connections between geogrpahy, genes, dieat, and health an interesting report yesterday actually connects Vitamin D not only to calcium absorption, but perhaps to childhood obseity as well:

"The federal standards for vitamin D intake have come under fire by public health professionals as being much too low, and disagreement continues over the proper amount of vitamin D necessary for optimal health.

"We found that the kids with the lowest vitamin D levels at the beginning tended to gain weight faster than the kids with higher levels," said Eduardo Villamor, associate professor at the U-M School of Public Health, who added that children with the lowest vitamin D levels had more drastic increases in central body fat measures.

Accumulation of abdominal fat, or central fat, may lead to a so-called apple body shape, which is commonly linked to increased risks of type 2 diabetes, heart disease and other chronic conditions later in life, says epidemiologist Villamor, senior author of the study."

Does this mean that the heavy coats and apparently perennial winter the characters from the show South Park exist in could be setting them up for obesity?  The one in the front actually does look apple-shaped...

Like we talked about in class, the complex physiology is just beginning to be understood!


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