Childhood increase of vitamin D intake linked to reduced risk of type 1 diabetes

Have you heard of the Finnish study on Vitamin D intake in the first year of life and the risk of type 1? They followed the kids from 1966 to 1997. I’ve read a few studies that have drawn this conclusion. I’m surprised I don’t hear about it more though. Perhaps it’s simply because I’ve never been pregnant!! Is this something your doctor discussed with you? I’m just wondering how people regard this conclusion.

“A birth-cohort study was done, in which all pregnant women (n=12055) in Oulu and Lapland, northern Finland, who were due to give birth in 1966 were enrolled. Data was collected in the first year of life about frequency and dose of vitamin D supplementation and presence of suspected rickets. Our primary outcome measure was diagnosis of type 1 diabetes by end of December, 1997.”


A post was merged into an existing topic: Study: baby formula from cow milk doesn’t increase incidence of T1 diabetes

I split the thread, @Katers87: I thought it was worth standing on its own :slight_smile:

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There’s a good chapter on the vitamin d link in Hurley’s “Diabetes Rising”

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I haven’t read this. Looks good though! Thanks for mentioning it.

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My endo thinks there is a correlation between BMI and incidence of T1. She is currently participating in a study to look into it.

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That’s explored in that book as well… they call one theory pertaining to that the “accelerator hypothesis”

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Wow, that’s good to know. I supplemented my daughter when she started solids and have a bottle waiting at home to start with this baby, but I don’t think its quite that high a dose - I’m not really surprised, though, as I have to take quite a bit myself (5000iu/day) to avoid deficiency.


That is interesting. High BMI or low BMI and does your Endo think it is age related or age independent in terms of the BMI correlation?

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High BMI. I have to say my son’s BMI was high as well. He was in the 99th percentile in his growth chart.

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I had been extremely lean my whole life until I packed on just a few extra lbs, maybe 10, and before I knew it I was a type 1 diabetic… could be coincidence, or could fit along with the accelerator hypothesis

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I will go out on a limb and will consider it a coincidence until conclusively proven otherwise.

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I’ve always been short and stocky. Stocky from cutting trees and lifting bails of hay as a child. Short from…genetics. I’ve never fit neatly into the BMI standards being around 200 pounds at only 5’7". I’ve always been considered “obese” even though for a large majority of my life (until mid 30’s), I’ve always been muscular and although always sent to the “fatty room” (that’s what they used to call it in the Army for overweight people who had to be taped after PT tests), they’d always kick me out of the room.

So if BMI is a determining factor, I’d think I’d have had T1 sometime in my early teenage years through today, since today I’m 205 lb. According to the NIH, I’m over 30 BMI.

This is why I’ve always considered BMI a joke. People come in all shapes and sizes and don’t always fit neatly into the BMI box.


It is a joke at the individual level when we try to apply its meaning to one individual— like you just described in your own case— but it’s value is when we apply it to large populations of people for macro studies etc… there has to be a simple metric to categorize people’s weights by… its good for that. You might not be significantly overweight, but if we took 10,000 people with a BMI of 32 or whatever—- the “typical” person, the hypothetical average person in that group—- is significantly overweight and those are the scales at which it’s relevant—- it’s silly when they apply it to individuals

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I mostly agree with the BMI being crap and over emphasized in research (and certainly all but useless on an individual level). There are a number of studies with the best findings for the “overweight” BMI category, and I would guess that’s because many people with a decent amount of muscle mass (and related benefits) are in the overweight category. Interestingly though, some effects of BMI do occur whether it’s because you’re muscular or fat. For instance, very high BMI is related to poorer neuropsychological health over time, regardless of % muscle mass and fat. Seems like having a very large body may be a strain on the system either way.

What’s also screwed up for BMI is that age, sex, and race need to be accounted for. If you’re going to use BMI, I prefer this adjusted BMI calculator to the standard one:


I find it frustrating when people take a stat that is likely completely valid for a large population and then assume it means the same thing when applied to an individual. It is almost impossible to convince some people that the one has absolutely no bearing on the other.

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One stats which works well for aggregate studies but absolutely not for individual recommendation: I think you are spot on the money when you conclude that it is not a worthwhile metric for many individual recommendations.

I was quick on the trigger :slight_smile: Sam just said the same thing as I, but did before me!

It is appropriate, and even necessary, to aggregate many different cases into categories so as to be able to make overall qualitative deductions on such categories. Otherwise, how can you generalize?

The issue arises when you use these generalizations to make individual recommendations. it may be qualitatively true that, statistically, BMI, on average, correlates with X and Y. But it all depends upon the SD (standard deviation) of the given correlation. If the SD is wide, then it liekly that many individual recommendations will be off the mark.

Unfortunately, this is just what happens with BMI:

  • BMI is used for individual recommendations. Just look at the number of calculators, and the recipes they give you to draw simple-minded conclusions

  • there is a very wide range of body types, and numerous studies have come out showing that a lot of the advice given does not apply to wide ranges of body shapes with the same BMI.

So, unless a piece of research actually provides you with the actual statistical parameters for the generalized concept you use, drawing any lessons on an individual case is VERY difficult.

As always, @Cardamom, your post brings out something to light I did not know. I love reading your comments and sources.

Agree again. It is very frustrating for people like Harold or me, stocky and muscular, to constantly get poor advice, even sometimes from uninformed medical professionals.

As a note, I sometimes get worried about wording on the forum. When I read everyone’s post here, I feel we are all saying exactly the same thing! But I can also see that some of the same posts can be misunderstood to imply disagreements or worse!

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In case one of my posts is misunderstood, I also think we all agree.