Obese children with low vitamin D levels have more risk of developing type 2 diabetes according to study by University of Texas researchers.

The study was published in the Endocrine Society's journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism.

Examining associations between low levels of vitamin D and dietary eating habits in obese children, researchers found a link between vitamin D levels with abnormal glucose metabolism and blood pressure.

"Our study found that obese children with lower vitamin D levels had higher degrees of insulin resistance," said Micah Olson, MD, of The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center in Dallas and lead author of the study.

Researchers measured vitamin D levels, blood sugar levels, blood pressure, serum insulin and Body Mass Index (BMI) of around 400 obese individuals, and around 90 non-obese individuals. Researchers then surveyed the dietary habits of eating , juice, soda, milk, average intake of vegetables and fruit and asked if subjects skipped breakfast or not.

"Poor dietary habits such as skipping breakfast and increased soda and juice intake were associated with the lower vitamin D levels seen in obese children," Olson said.

Past studies have confirmed links between type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease to low vitamin D levels. Obese individuals also have been found to be deficient in vitamin D.

"Future studies are needed to determine the clinical significance of lower vitamin D levels in obese children, the amount and duration of treatment necessary to replenish vitamin D levels in these children and whether treatment with vitamin D can improve primary clinical endpoints such as insulin resistance."

"Although our study cannot prove causation, it does suggest that low vitamin D levels may play a role in the development of type 2 diabetes," Olson said.