Get out in the sun more
All Asian children under the age of two should get vitamin D supplements, according to scientists....
According to Dr Christos Zipitis, lead author of the study and a paediatrician, the rate of deficiency in Asian children was one in 117 compared with one in 923 children overall.
He said as well as having increased skin pigmentation, Asian children often had diets low in vitamin D.
The team then analysed the cost of treatment for these 14 patients, covering the cost of medication, hospital care and follow up appointments. It averaged up to £2,505 per patient.
They then looked at the cost of vitamin D supplementation needed to prevent one case of deficiency in the whole population of children, based on their figures.
They did so based on guidelines by the Committee on Medical Aspects of Food and Nutrition Policy (COMA), which recommend varying levels of vitamin D over the first two years of a child's life. They found it be £47,534 per child.
But when they looked at the cost of preventing one case of deficiency in an Asian child, it came to £2,410.
The BBC fails to note any other possible reasons - unlike a fuller report I have mentioned before.
Reuters Health Information (2006-08-04): Vitamin D often low in seemingly healthy girls
... measured vitamin D levels in 14 white and 37 non-white 14-16-year-old girls attending an inner city multi-ethnic girls' school in the UK.
Thirty-seven girls (73 percent) were vitamin D deficient, and nine (17 percent) were severely deficient.
Average vitamin D levels were higher in white girls than in non-white girls.
For the group as a whole, the vitamin D concentration correlated with the estimated duration of daily sunlight exposure and percentage of body surface area exposed, but not with estimated intake of vitamin D.
"This is in keeping with the fact that the main source of vitamin D is that produced by the action of solar ultraviolet B radiation acting on 7-dehydrocholesterol in skin," the team explains. "Only small amounts are obtained from dietary sources."
As they note, "Avoidance of exposure to sunshine for religious and cultural beliefs that encourage wearing of concealing clothing and restriction of outdoor activities has previously been reported as a risk factor for vitamin D deficiency
And judging by the Middle Class' hysterical fear of their darlings playing in the sun it soon won't just be swaddled Asians in trouble.