(1) Background: Vitamin D status has never been investigated in children in Northern Ireland (UK). (2) Methods: Children (4–11 years) (n = 47) were recruited from November 2019 to March 2020 onto the cross-sectional study. Anthropometry was assessed. Plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D) was analysed. Vitamin D intake, parental knowledge and perceptions, participant habits, physical activity and sedentary behaviour were established via questionnaire. Muscle strength was assessed via isometric grip strength dynamometry and balance via dominant single-leg and tandem stance. Parathyroid hormone, bone turnover markers (OC, CTX and P1NP), glycated haemoglobin and inflammatory markers (CRP, IFN-γ, IL-10, IL-12p70, IL-13, IL-1β, IL-2, IL-4, IL-6, IL-8 and TNF-α) were analysed. (3) Results: Mean (SD) 25(OH)D was 49.17 (17.04) nmol/L (n = 47); 44.7% of the children were vitamin D sufficient (25(OH)D >50 nmol/L), 48.9% were insufficient (25–50 nmol/L) and 6.4% were deficient (<25 nmol/L). 25(OH)D was positively correlated with vitamin D intake (µg/day) (p = 0.012, r = 0.374), spring/summer outdoor hours (p = 0.006, r = 0.402) and dominant grip strength (kg) (p = 0.044, r = 0.317). Vitamin D sufficient participants had higher dietary vitamin D intake (µg/day) (p = 0.021), supplement intake (µg/day) (p = 0.028) and spring/summer outdoor hours (p = 0.015). (4) Conclusion: Over half of the children were vitamin D deficient or insufficient. Wintertime supplementation, the consumption of vitamin D rich foods and spring/summer outdoor activities should be encouraged to minimise the risk of vitamin D inadequacy.
Bibliographical noteFunding Information:
Funding: This project was primarily funded by a Queen Margaret University PhD studentship (Ms Dominique Glatt) and the Fergus Maclay Leukaemia Trust. Partial financial support was received from Better You Ltd. (Barnsley, UK), which was solely used for inflammatory and bone turnover marker analysis.
© 2022 by the authors. Licensee MDPI, Basel, Switzerland.
- Northern Ireland
- healthy school children
- muscle strength
- vitamin D deficiency
- vitamin D status
- Vitamin D deficiency
- Muscle strength
- Vitamin D status
- Healthy school children
- Cross-Sectional Studies
- Vitamin D Deficiency/epidemiology
- Vitamin D
- Outcome Assessment, Health Care
- Dietary Supplements