As you may know in my other blog
http://www.cyclingbookreviews.wordpress.com, I have been reading about a woman cyclist-midwife who was working in East London who wrote a book called ‘Call the Midwife’. Anyway, I’m still reading this excellent book and one of the things she mentions about her time in East London is Rickets.
She was saying that many children had rickets in her day because of lack of Vitamin D ie absence of drinking milk, meats and living in areas where large buildings ‘block the sunlight’. She also said that women who have had rickets in childhood, because of their deformed pelvis, have had problems giving birth and often some children have died, not to mention the mother.
In these days where people jump in cars all the time and don’t get adequate sunlight or work long hours in offices where architects ensure the human body doesn’t natural liight and people not being on the right diet, rickets still is going on in this country. So if people are stuck in doors etc they’re not going to get adequate Vitamin D unless they take supplements or eat properly. At least with cyclists, they can access to Vitamin D ‘naturally’.
Muslim women walking round London covered in black aren’t going to get Vitamin D or if they’re going round in cars all the time. Fortunately, some of these women are going cycling which will help although no doubt they will be covered from head to foot mostly. So when do they get any sunlight?
I have dug out an article from the Daily Mail last year:-
“Pregnant women are being urged to take vitamin D pills to prevent rickets affecting their babies.
The Government wants women to consider taking the supplement if they are expecting or breastfeeding.
Health workers are seeing more children than ever with vitamin D deficiency, which can lead to seizures and make the bones fail to grow properly.
It was thought that rickets had virtually been eliminated after the war, although children in developing countries still suffered from the bowed legs and fragile bones associated with the disorder.
But the changing lifestyle of UK with many spending long periods indoors may be contributing to a resurgence”
As large buildings go up in the City and everywhere else, architects should ensure that basic human needs such as natural light, are accessible to employees. Even my own optician has to work in an office that has no window but this kind of thing, should be illegal. Instead of just giving out supplements all the time, perhaps people should just eat better and get out more! Supplements are a cop out when the Government should be doing a lot more about this issue.