A study is claiming that dietary supplementation in children with Autism Spectrum Disorders is common, insufficient, and excessive.

The study was published online in the June edition of the Journal of Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

The cross-sectional study looked at dietary supplements and the micronutrient intake of children with ASD.  Estimates of usual intake of micronutrients from food and supplements were compared with the Dietary Reference Intakes in children aged 2 to 11 years old with ASD from five autism treatment network sites from 2009 to 2011.

The percentage of children meeting or exceeding micronutrient intake with or without supplements was evaluated.

Results of the study showed the most common micronutrient deficits of vitamin D, calcium, potassium, pantothenic acid, and choline were not corrected with supplements.

It showed that supplementation led to excess vitamin A, folate, and zinc intake across the sample, vitamin C, and copper among children aged 2 to 3 years, and manganese and copper for children aged 4 to 8 years.

Researchers conclude that few ASD children who need micronutrients commonly given as supplements often leads to excess intake. They caution that when supplements are used, careful attention should be given to adequacy of vitamin D and calcium intake.


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