The C.A.M. Report
Complementary and Alternative Medicine: Fair, Balanced, and to the Point
  • About this web log

    This blog is intended as an objective and dispassionate source of information on the latest CAM research. Since my background is in pharmacy and allopathic medicine, I view all CAM as advancing through the development pipeline to eventually become integrated into mainstream medical practice. Some will succeed while others fail. But all are treated fairly here.

  • About the author

    John Russo, Jr., PharmD, is president of The MedCom Resource, Inc. Previously, he was senior vice president of medical communications at www.Vicus.com, a complementary and alternative medicine website.

  • Common sense considerations

    The material on this weblog is for informational purposes. It is not medical advice or counsel. Be smart, consult your health professional before using CAM.

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    Does vitamin D reduce the risk of diabetes in infants?

    Vitamin D treatment during infancy might protect from the development of type 1 diabetes, according to this review of the medical literature by researchers from the Central Manchester and Manchester Children’s University Hospitals in the UK.

    First, the details.

    • Only 5 observational studies were found.
      • In observational studies, researchers report what happened, without deliberately attempting to alter the outcomes.
      • By comparison, randomized controlled studies are designed to show the impact of a treatment by randomly assigning individuals to the treatment or a control group.

    And, the results.

    • Reanalysis of the results (meta-analysis) suggested that the risk of type 1 diabetes was significantly reduced in infants supplemented with vitamin D compared to infants not supplemented.
    • There was also evidence that higher amounts of vitamin D had a greater effect on lowering the risk of type 1 diabetes.
    • Finally, there was a suggestion that the timing of supplementation might also affect development of type 1 diabetes.

    The bottom line?
    Additional research is needed to confirm these findings and determine the dose, duration, and timing of vitamin D supplementation in early childhood.

    Current vitamin D guidelines from the American Academy of Pediatrics focus on preventing rickets. Infants who receive less than 500 mL of vitamin D–fortified formula daily (ie, breast-fed infants) should receive 200 IU of vitamin D daily.

    4/27/08 22:53 JR

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