children who are not exposed to adequate sunlight, most children who had a mean dietary intake of 1.9 to 2.5 µg (75 to 100 IU)/day (Gultekin et al., 1987) showed no evidence of vitamin D deficiency and had normal serum 25(OH)D values. To cover the needs of almost all children ages 1 though 8, regardless of exposure to sunlight, the above value is doubled for an AI of 5 µg (200 IU)

AI for Children

1 through 3 years

5.0 µg (200 IU)/day

AI for Children

4 through 8 years

5.0 µg (200 IU)/day

Ages 9 through 13 and 14 through 18 Years
Indicator Used to Estimate the AI

Serum 25(OH)D. During puberty, the metabolism of 25(OH)D to 1,25(OH)2D increases (Aksnes and Aarskog, 1982). The increased blood concentrations of 1,25(OH)2D enhance intestinal calcium absorption to provide adequate calcium for the rapidly growing skeleton. However, there is no scientific evidence that demonstrates an increased requirement for vitamin D. In boys and girls aged 8 to 18 years, who are estimated to ingest 2.5 µg (100 IU)/day of vitamin D from margarine, the mean 25(OH)D concentration in the children in late March was 55 ± 2.5 nmol/liter (22 ± 1 ng/ml) (Aksnes and Aarskog, 1982).

In the few studies available, children during the pubertal years maintained a normal serum 25(OH)D level with dietary vitamin D intakes of 2.5 to 10 µg (100 to 400 IU)/day. Aksnes and Aarskog (1982) had the same result in Scandinavian children aged 8 to 18 years consuming 2.5 µg (100 IU)/day from margarine or 10 µg (400 IU)/day from supplements during the winter months. At intakes less than 2.5 µg (100 IU)/day, Turkish children aged 12 to 17 years had mean serum 25(OH)D concentrations that were consistent with vitamin D deficiency (< 27.5 nmol/liter [< 11 ng/ml]) (Gultekin et al., 1987). In those with mean intakes of 2.0 ± 0.5 ± µg (79 ± 18 IU)/day of vitamin D, serum 25(OH)D levels were 32.75 ± 2.75 nmol/liter (13.1 ± 1.1 ng/ml) for boys and 14.5 ± 1.75 nmol/liter (5.8 ± 0.7 ng/ml) for girls. With regular sun exposure, there would not be a dietary need for vitamin D (Ala-Houhala et al., 1984; Gultekin et al., 1987; Pettifor et al., 1978a; Riancho et al., 1989; Taylor and Norman, 1984). However, children who live in the far northern and southern latitudes, may be unable to synthesize enough vitamin D in their skin that can be stored for use in the



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