Vitamin D helps prevent stress fractures in girls -

Vitamin D helps prevent stress fractures in girls

When it comes to running, jumping and tumbling, girls tend to give it their all. But overdoing high-impact sports can put stress on their bones, causing tiny fractures.

Calcium has long been known as good for your bones, but a new study finds this type of injury can be prevented by giving young girls a "D" – as in vitamin D.

Denise Cole, RD is the Inpatient Dietitian at Cleveland Clinic.

She says, "They didn't see as much of a relationship between calcium and dairy as they thought they would, but they did see a relationship with increased vitamin D intakes and stress fractures. So there was actually a decreased amount of stress fractures in the girls that had a higher vitamin D intake."

This lowered risk of stress fractures was especially true among girls who participate in at least one hour of high impact activity per day.

Researchers say the results support the increase in adolescents' daily allowance for vitamin D, as recommended by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

For concerned parents, there are plenty of ways to get more D into your child's diet.

"I always say skim milk is a great way to do this, because we're getting the calcium with the fortified vitamin D," says Cole. "So, anytime you can get two servings of fat-free milk into your adolescent child a day is perfect. Also, we can look at things like fortified oatmeal; we can even look at things like lasagna, cheese pizzas, ice cream. Those are all things adolescents are likely to eat and you know they are getting their calcium and vitamin D."

But Cole says ingestion of vitamin D should be spaced out throughout the day, because your body can't absorb it all at once.

Prevention is key to avoiding stress fractures, and now with these new findings, adequate vitamin D intake may help girl contenders stay off the bench and in the game.

Copyright 2012 America Now. All rights reserved.

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