With indoor living, clothing and avoiding the sun inadequate levels of vitamin D are being seen increasingly in the UK population as a whole.
- A nationwide survey published in the British Medical Journal found that more than 50% of the general adult population have insufficient levels of vitamin D, and that 16% have severe deficiency during winter and spring.
Public Health England now recommends that everyone in the UK take a vitamin D supplement in autumn or winter of 10mcg (400 IU) a day.
Ensuring regular sunlight in the spring and summer months will also help. Fifteen minutes each day of midday sun on the forearms and face without sunblock should produce sufficient vitamin D for Caucasians under the age of sixty during summer. Those who have darker skin or who are older may require thirty minutes or more.
Other’s have recommended higher doses of vitamin D. The Vegan society makes a supplement containing 800 IU of vegan vitamin D3 a day (which also contains vitamin B12, iodine and selenium).