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Americans Low on Vitamin D

Americans Low on Vitamin D

By Jennifer Warner, WebMD Health News, March 25, 2009

Low vitamin D levels among adults are fast becoming a growing epidemic and could spell trouble for the future health of the nation, according to a new study.

Researchers found that not only has the number of Americans with low vitamin D levels increased, but average vitamin D levels among adults have also decreased from 1994 to 2004.

Vitamin D is produced by the skin in response to sunlight and is also found in vitamin D fortified foods, such as milk.

Low vitamin D levels are already known to cause rickets in children and weaken bones in adults. Recent studies also have linked low vitamin D levels with cancer, heart disease, infection, and other health problems.

Researchers say the results suggest that current recommendations for vitamin D supplementation may not be high enough to address the increasing health problem of low vitamin D levels.

Researchers say vitamin D levels may have dropped as a result of people spending less time outside and avoiding the sun.

“Current recommendations for dosage of vitamin D supplements are inadequate to address this growing epidemic of vitamin D insufficiency,” write researcher Adit A. Ginde, MD, MPH, of the University of Colorado Denver School of Medicine and colleagues in the Archives of Internal Medicine. “Increased intake of vitamin D (greater than or equal to 1,000 IU/d)–particularly during the winter months and at higher latitudes–and judicious sun exposure would improve vitamin D status and likely improve the overall health of the U.S. population.”

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Comments»

1. Ted Hutchinson - April 7, 2009

Each 1000iu/daily of extra vitamin D3 raises status 10ng or 25nmol/l.
In the UK with average winter 25(OH)D status around 35nmol/l 1000iu/d extra still leaves them deficient.
The NATURAL level of 25(OH)D those who live outdoors naked as our DNA evolved is around 60~80ng 150~200nmol/l.
When we look at Grassrootshealth Disease Incidence Prevention by Serum 25(OH)D Level pdf chart we see those with a status approaching 60ng have the least incidence of chronic disease.
It is also at that level human breast milk flows replete with vitamin d3.
Until such time as there is specific evidence that attaining and maintaining the level of vitamin d enjoyed by our primitive ancestors is dangerous or in some way unhealthy I think this is a safer level to strive for than is suggested by the researcher above.


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