January 08, 2016 11:49
The number of patients treated for vitamin D deficiency increased sharply over the past four years, according to a report released by the Health Insurance Review and Assessment Service on Thursday.
The number of such patients rose from 3,118 in 2010 to 31,225 in 2014. Particularly, it was far more prevalent among women, with female patients in 2014 numbering some 23,200, or 74 percent of the total, compared to 8,005 male patients, or 25.6 percent.
By age, those in their 50s made up the largest group, accounting for 24.1 percent, followed by those in their 40s (18.5 percent), 60s (13.8 percent) and 50s (30s) (13.5 percent).
Vitamin D deficiency can stunt growth and cause abnormal changes in bones and joints. Prevention is the best cure, so it is important to spend sufficient time outdoors in order to be exposed to sunlight, which helps vitamin D form inside the body.
This should also be supplemented by eating foods rich in the compound such as egg yolk, butter and milk.
"There is a limit to how much vitamin D you can take in via food, so it is essential to go out and get some sunshine," said Oh Seung-jun at the HIRAS.
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