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Katherine Lee

Allergies in Kids May be Tied to Vitamin D Deficiency

By February 28, 2011

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Could having low levels of vitamin D be linked to kids' allergies?

In the latest study suggesting a correlation between vitamin D deficiency and allergies, researchers at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York found that kids who had low levels of vitamin D were 2.4 times more likely to be allergic to peanuts than kids who had sufficient levels of the vitamin. Kids with low vitamin D levels were also more likely to be sensitive to ragweed, birch, thistle, oak, dog, cockroach, and other environmental allergens.

The study, which was recently published in the Journal of Allergy and Clinical Immunology, examined vitamin D levels in more than 3,100 children and 3,4000 adults. While a link was found between low levels of vitamin D and increased risk for allergies, none was found for adults.

Previous studies have also found a correlation between vitamin D and allergies. The connection, say researchers, may have to do with the fact that vitamin D acts as an anti-inflammatory (allergic reactions are inflammatory responses to something). The researchers also note that finding a link between low vitamin D levels and allergies does not mean that vitamin D deficiency causes allergies in kids.

They do, however, suggest that it's a good idea to make sure your kids get enough of this important vitamin.

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