Although numerous studies have investigated the effects of vitamin D supplementation on cognition and mental health among the adult population, little is known about its effects among adolescents. In an article published in 2017, researchers examined the effects of vitamin Don adolescent cognition and mental health.
Vitamins and minerals, when taken in adequate amounts, benefit our body in different ways. Vitamin D, a fat-soluble vitamin, helps to balance the levels of phosphorous and calcium in our body. Numerous studies also suggest that vitamin D supplementation improves cognitive function and mental health among the adult population. However, little is known about its effects on cognition and mental health in adolescents.
In a study published in the Scandinavian Journal of Psychology in 2017, a group of researchers did a double-blind randomized control trial to determine the effects of Vitamin D on cognitive status and self-perception of mental health among adolescents. The study included a total of 50 adolescents, aged 13-14, who were randomly sorted into two groups. One group took a daily dose of 38 μg vitamin D for 3 months while the other was given the placebo. A standardized test which measured strategic thinking, problem-solving, and planning, as well as a survey about self-perception of mental health, was given to both groups before and after the supplementation period. Blood samples were also taken to measure serum vitamin D levels.
The researchers concluded that those who were deficient in vitamin D performed poorly on the baseline test pre-supplementations. Although there was no significant difference in the cognitive performance between the two groups, those who received the daily vitamin D supplementation finished the tests in a shorter period of time. As for the perception of mental health, the researchers again found no significant difference between the two groups. However, this may be attributed to the small sample size of the study. Future studies are needed to better understand the effects of different vitamins and minerals on the developing brain.
Written By: Karla Sevilla