Kellogg's is to fortify its cereals, such as Rice Krispies, with vitamin D to help combat Britain's deficiency in the essential nutrient and help tackle the growing issue of illnesses relating to vitamin D deficiency, such as Rickets, the company said.
New research released shows that 94% of paediatric dieticians feel that parents aren't aware of the importance of vitamin D in the diet. A further 82% of paediatric dieticians surveyed have seen an increase in cases of Rickets in the last five years and 46% say they have seen cases of Rickets in the last year alone.
A recent study carried out by consultant orthopaedic surgeon Professor Nicholas Clarke at Southampton General Hospital, showed more than 20% of children checked for bone problems in his clinic had significant deficiencies.
Clarke said: "Although we have seen an increase in awareness of rickets as a condition, it does not seem to have reduced the prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in the population we treat and that is of great concern.
"Our study showed that vitamin D deficiency does not occur in any particular ethnic minority or social depravation group. It's something that affects all demographic groups."
Currently there isn't a recommended nutritional intake (RNI) of Vitamin D for children over five years old, because it is assumed they will get enough from sunlight.
Jacqui Lowdon, chair of the Paediatric Group at British Dietetic Association, said: "'Health professionals are increasingly becoming aware that even mild vitamin D deficiency can be detrimental for long-term health. Its important that children are encouraged to get some sun exposure without sunblock, more foods are fortified with Vitamin D and supplementation is encouraged."
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