Recent research in animals have shown that vitamin D deficiency is linked with impaired development. Human studies have shown that poor vitamin-D status prenatally is associated with adverse neuropsychiatric outcomes including schizophrenia and child autism.
Vitamin-D deficiency is considered to be one of the most common nutritional deficiencies and a commonly undiagnosed medical condition in the world. It is required for normal calcification of the growth plate and bone mineralization. Children have higher calcium demands than adults; they require a positive calcium balance to assure adequate calcium for the mineralization of growing bone.
A study led by Dr. Ranadip Chowdhury and published in the Nutrition Journal examined the extent to which vitamin-D deficiency (<10 ng/ml) is associated with neurodevelopment and physical growth in young children. Researchers measured 25-hydroxy-vitamin-D (25OHD) concentration at baseline for 960 children. Of these, 331 children were vitamin-D deficient. The total and subscale Ages and Stages Questionnaire-3 (ASQ-3) scores, were not different between the vitamin-D deficient and non-deficient children. Furthermore, vitamin-D deficiency was also not associated with physical growth at baseline and at follow-up.
The data from this study does not support the hypothesis that vitamin-D deficiency is associated with poor growth and neurodevelopment. However, further studies need to be done to support the data from this study.