Long known as the sunshine vitamin, vitamin D is well-established with regards to its ability help prevent autoimmune diseases and even reduce the risk of developing cancer. There are more than a few ways to ensure that you’re getting an adequate amount each day. First off, eating the right foods such as salmon can help, or you can also supplement your diet with vitamin D capsules. Of course, taking a walk outside in the sunshine is always a good option too!
Consumption of vitamin D is as important as ever, as new studies have indicated that more than a third of the global population is suffering from a vitamin D deficiency.
Nutra Ingredients reports the analysis of these studies were published in the British Journal of Nutrition and found that “37.3% of the studies reviewed reported mean serum vitamin levels – measured by 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25(OH)D values – to be below 50 nmol/l; a value considered inadequate by health authorities worldwide.”
The analysis was led by Dr. Kristina Hoffman from the Mannheim Institute of Public Health at Mannheim, Heidelberg University.
Hoffman stated, “The strength of our study is that we used strict inclusion criteria to filter and compare data, using consistent values for 25 (OH)D.” She added, “Although we found a high degree of variability between reports of vitamin D status at the population level, more than one-third of the studies reviewed reported mean serum 25 (OH)D values below 50 nmol/l.”
Judy Stenmark, CEO of the International Osteoporosis Foundation, also commented on the study, stating, “Given the global increase in the number of seniors and the almost fourfold increase in hip fractures due to osteoporosis since 1990, public health officials must address the impact of inadequate vitamin D status on fracture risk and overall health in their ageing populations as well as on children and adolescents.”
With regards to the specifics of the study, the research team “examined patterns of (25(OH)D) from the 195 studies in order to assess potential differences by age, sex and region.” The team discovered that “the mean population-level 25 (OH)D values varied considerably across the studies.” They did however note, “37.3% of the studies reported mean values below 50 nmol/l – a level that is generally classed as inadequate by health authorities worldwide.”
Low levels of vitamin D can be associated with increased risks of cancer and osteoporosis. For more information on vitamin D and ensuring that you’re getting enough of it, check out this great interview by Andrea with Dr. Zoltan Rona, author of “Vitamin D: The Sunshine Vitamin.”
Photo Credit: Guillaume Cattiaux