According to a new study supplementing with a high-dose of Vitamin D may improve language and motor skills development as well as improve weight gain in malnourished children.
185 severely malnourished children between the ages of 6 and 58 months provided the data for this trial. All the participants were given high energy food sachets and were randomized to either receive a Vitamin D supplement or a placebo. The study lasted 8 weeks.
The group who were receiving the supplement of Vitamin D experienced a significant improvement in weight (.26 kg compared to the control group). Additionally Vitamin D seemed to considerably reduce the proportion of children experiencing delayed global development, delayed language development and delayed motor development, which were defined by reaching milestones like learning to talk or walk.
Throughout the world may children live with severe malnutrition which increases their risks of suffering from both physical and mental health conditions. Currently only modest amounts of Vitamin D are included in the high energy food sachets, which are the typical protocol for the treatment of severe acute malnutrition.
Further studies are planned.
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