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High blood pressure due to lack of vitamin D in early childhood


Infant vitamin D levels have long-term effects on blood pressure

High blood pressure may develop as a possible consequence of vitamin D deficiency in childhood, according to a recent study by US and Chinese researchers. Further intake of vitamin D during pregnancy and in early childhood could also have a preventative effect in this regard, reports the Children's Association (BVKJ), citing the results of the study.

According to the latest research by Guoying Wang's research team at Bloomsberg School of Public Health at Boston Hop University, there is an association between vitamin D levels in early childhood and afternoon blood pressure. Persistent vitamin D deficiency in early childhood is associated with doubling the risk of high levels of systolic blood pressure later in life, the researchers report. The results of her study were published in the journal "Hypertension".

Vitamin D is especially important in early childhood and lifelong consequences may be present in the event of a deficiency. These may also include high blood pressure, according to a recent study. (Image: Zerbor /

Link between vitamin D and blood pressure

Vitamin D can be absorbed only through the diet in a very limited way. However, it develops in the body when the skin comes in contact with sunlight. In the body vitamin D performs many important functions. For example, it is necessary to use calcium for bone augmentation. Previous research has also shown that vitamin D deficiency in adults is associated with high blood pressure, the research team reports. To date, however, it has not been clear whether vitamin D status at a young age can affect blood pressure in later life.

775 children attended

Guoying Wang's research team examined the effect of early-stage vitamin D levels on early-stage systolic blood pressure (SBP) in the latest study from data from 775 children enrolled in a prospective birth cohort study from Boston. Until the age of 18, participants were regularly examined medically. Systolic blood pressure and vitamin D in the blood plasma were also measured.

Rising risk with low vitamin D levels

The researchers then looked for possible links between low vitamin D levels (less than 11 ng / ml at birth, less than 25 ng / ml in early childhood) and increased levels of systolic blood pressure later in life. They were able to show that low vitamin D status at birth was associated with an increased 38 percent elevated systolic blood pressure by the age of three to 18 years. The lack of vitamin D showed only in early childhood, which led to a risk of nearly 60 percent.

Double the risk of constant vitamin D deficiency

Vitamin D deficiency already existed at birth and then continued into early childhood, doubling the risk of increased systolic blood pressure three to 18 years ago, the researchers report. These results indicate that low vitamin D status in early life is associated with an increased risk of developing systolic hypertension in childhood and adolescence, the research team emphasizes.

Are new strategies to prevent hypertension possible?

Although a causal relationship is not yet established, as it was merely an observational study. However, the findings of the study could help develop strategies for vitamin D screening and supplementation during pregnancy and childhood to decrease the risk of increased blood pressure throughout life.

Vitamin D tablets recommended for children in the first year of life

To date, in Germany, the prescription of vitamin D tablets in breastfed and non-breastfed babies is recommended from the end of the first week of life to the end of the first year of life, as it is particularly important for bone formation in the present time and development. of lack. Rockets threaten, reports the Association of Pediatricians (BVKJ), citing the German Society for Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine (DGKJ). Prophylactic activity may continue if necessary in the second year of life in the winter months.

How can vitamin D deficiency be possible?

According to the BVKJ, existing vitamin D deficiency can be determined relatively easily by examining the blood. Such a study is useful, for example, in children with certain chronic diseases (inflammatory bowel disease, chronic kidney or liver disease) or when taking medications that affect the metabolism of calcium or vitamin D. However, high pigmentation (dark skin) and lack of contact with sunlight are also possible causes of lack of vitamin D. (Fp)


Diplomat Geogr. Fabian Peters


  • Guo Wang, Xin Liu, Tami R. Bartell, Colleen Pearson, Tina L. Cheng: Vitamin D Trajectories From Birth to Early Childhood and Elevated Systemic Blood Pressure During Childhood and Adolescence; in Hypertension Vol. 74: 421-430 (August 2019),
  • Berufsverband der Kinder- und Jugendärzte (BVKJ): Low levels of vitamin D in early childhood may favor hypertension (August 12, 2018),

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