Remember when your parents told you get outside and play? We all thought it was to get out of their hair, but it’s really more than given them peace. Being outside in the sun helps us to increase our natural Vitamin D3 levels. This article is not about bone health, but mental health. Kids today are staying indoors too much and guess what we’re seeing? More violence, introverted kids who can only be social by texting each other or playing video games hiding behind make believe name and not openly communicating. If you want to have peaceful kids, give them Vitamin D and Fish oil!
When we increase our Vitamin D3 levels (the body uses 4600IU daily), we mentally feel better and it can ward off depression. When I hear about kids or teenagers being depressed, one issue that parents need to take control is their nutritional health! Seventy percent of children and adults in the US are Vitamin D deficient. The cause of deficiency is a combination of not enough sun exposure, and a diet low in Vitamin D. We have a major epidemic on our hands and anti-depressants aren’t the answer, but improving levels of Vitamin D are!
I take mental health seriously and hear many clients daily about the perils of not being able to cope with everyday situations or fighting depression for no known reason. Just adding a Vitamin D supplement can do wonders for kids! I suggest taking away their tech toys and get them outside and play. Being outside is healthy and there are many activities which kids can enjoy and ought to enjoy. When I was a kid, it was fun not to have toys, because it allowed your mind to be creative. We use to play cowboys and Indians or cops and robbers before it became politically incorrect. We got our clothes dirty and skinned our elbows and we still became highly functional adults! Diet is a major concern today as too many do not cook anymore and run through the drive-thru for an evening meal. It is time to regroup and get back to the dinner table. I’m not here to tell you how to raise your kids, but who we’re fooling, of course I am! To increase their level of vitamin D through food, you should include more oily fish, such as salmon, mackerel and tuna in their diet. Egg yolks and mushrooms also provide vitamin D, or you could choose a cereal and milk fortified with vitamin D.
Parents, please take your kids health seriously. Just watch the news, the violence caused by children or teenagers is increasing. I know it’s not just a Vitamin D deficiency, but a lack of love in the home. But making sure your kids have their daily dose of Vitamin D is an act of love in itself.
Ward W. Bond, Ph.D.