Vitamin D is essential for the absorption of calcium and phosphate in the body, which are vital for the growth and maintenance of healthy bones, muscle and teeth. New advice is that everyone should take a vitamin D supplement (10mcg per day) during the winter.
“While vitamin D supplements have long been recommended for ‘at risk’ groups, including pregnant or breastfeeding women, young children and the over-65s, this is new advice based on evidence looked at over the last five years”, explains Dr Louis Levy, head of nutrition science at PHE.
“Previously we felt that everybody would get enough from sunlight”, he continued. However, an extensive review carried out by the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) suggests this is not the case, with official estimates suggesting one in five adults in England may have low levels.