Saturday 30 July 2016

Vitamin D - are you getting enough?

Medical science is a marvellous thing. It is thanks to scientists and researchers that we have had medical breakthroughs that accomplish such wonders as curing diseases, providing immunisations against infectious diseases, and technology and medicine to save lives. Medical science and research is continually striving to provides cures, understand in greater depth diseases and illnesses, and look at how our health can be improved.

In recent news it has been reported that the Government have recommended that everyone in the UK should consider taking vitamin D Supplements. According to officials getting the recommended amount of vitamin D a day is not doable through diet alone, especially when sunlight which helps in vitamin D production is rare.

According to a BBC news article officials think that 1 in 5 adults and 1 in 6 children in England have low levels of vitamin D. Whilst vitamin D can be found in foods such as eggs, oily fish, and fortified cereals, most people get their bulk of the vitamin thanks to the action of the sun on their skin which when limited especially during winter months causing a deficiency in vitamin D.

As low vitamin D levels can cause brittle bones and rickets in children, and a healthy supply of the vitamin is needed to help maintain bone and muscle health and reduce the risk of bone disease and fragility, public health officials are recommending that everyone over the age of one should take vitamin D supplements.

Dr David Mantle FRSC FRCPath, Medical Adviser at Pharma Nord has this to say about this announcement by the government -

"UK health authorities have recently acknowledged what Pharma Nord has been advising for years - that people in the UK should consider taking a vitamin D3 supplement, particularly during the winter months. This is because vitamin D3 is mainly produced in the skin during exposure to strong sunlight, and sunlight levels in the UK are generally insufficient during the Winter for the body to manufacture sufficient vitamin D3.

Most people are aware of the importance of vitamin D3 for maintaining healthy bones and teeth, but vitamin D3 has many other functions within the body, including normal immune function. Public health England have recommended a daily dose of vitamin D3 of 400IU, although this may be insufficient for some individuals. Certain categories of the population, for example dark skinned ethnic minorities, are at particular risk of vitamin D3 deficiency, which can be confirmed via a blood test."

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