Childhood diabetes numbers are on the rise. Much of this can be attributed to generally unhealthier diets abounding with excess fat and sodium, and while that’s bad enough, what’s even worse is the absence of vitamins and nutrients essential to maintaining good health. Every time you eat something unhealthy, you’re depriving your body of a chance to consume the right kinds of foods that it needs in order to thrive. Vitamins play such an important role in staving off chronic ailments like diabetes, but not all vitamins are created equal as a recent study funded by the National Institute of Health’s National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive & Kidney Diseases.
Colorado School of Public Health Professor Jill Norris studied the connection between vitamin D blood levels and islet autoimmunity, a process which is considered a precursor to developing type 1 diabetes. So far, the results seem promising as the children who were part of the study and who exhibited higher levels of vitamin D had a markedly lower risk of islet autoimmunity, which could subsequently indicate that their risk of developing diabetes is similarly reduced.
Some of the best sources of vitamin D other than supplements include salmon, herring, sardines, cod liver oil, mushrooms and eggs. Additionally, you can regularly find soy milk, dairy milk and even orange juice and other beverages which have been fortified with added vitamin D. Consider adding a well-rounded multivitamin to supplement your vitamin D levels if you have a family history of diabetes, chewable multivitamins can be a great alternative for children who have difficulty with pills. With diabetes, as with many chronic illnesses, early prevention and proper dietary management can make all the difference.
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