Inadequate levels of vitamin D contribute to stunted growth and underweight status of Ecuadorian children

A team of researchers from different research institutions in the U.S. and Ecuador discovered another health risk associated with vitamin D deficiency. In their study, which was published in the journal Public Health Nutrition, it was revealed that vitamin D deficiency in Ecuadorian children was associated with stunted growth and with being underweight.

  • Vitamin D is an important nutrient for many processes in the body. Unfortunately, many people are deficient in this vitamin.
  • The goal of this study was to evaluate the vitamin D status of Ecuadorian children and then assess its association with undernutrition.
  • To do this, the researchers measured the serum levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D and determined their relationship with stunting and being underweight using multivariate logistic regression. They included participants who were between six to 36 months old and who lived in a low socio-economic status setting.
  • They observed that 18.6 percent of the children were deficient in vitamin D levels and that these children were more likely to exhibit stunted growth. Furthermore, they saw that underweight children were more likely to have inadequate levels of vitamin D.

Overall, these results show that vitamin D deficiency is common in children who are underweight and who exhibit stunted growth.

If you’d like to read more news articles on the importance of vitamin D, visit

Journal Reference:

Mokhtar RR, Holick MF, Sempértegui F, Griffiths JK, Estrella B, Moore LL, Fox MP, Hamer DH. VITAMIN D STATUS IS ASSOCIATED WITH UNDERWEIGHT AND STUNTING IN CHILDREN AGED 6–36 MONTHS RESIDING IN THE ECUADORIAN ANDES. Public Health Nutrition. 2017;21(11). DOI: 10.1017/s1368980017002816

comments powered by Disqus