Supply situation

Surveys in several European countries, such as Germany (95), Austria (66)Ireland (67)The Netherlands (68) and the U.K. (69), indicate that a substantial part of the population has a vitamin D intake below the recommended levels.

Although fortification of foods has led to complacency regarding vitamin D deficiency, nutritional rickets (see Deficiency) is still being reported in cities throughout the world (70, 65).

Studies have shown that many elderly and institutionalized adults are not sufficiently supplemented with vitamin D, and are therefore at extremely high risk of vitamin D deficiency (71, 72).

Immigrants, such as dark-skinned people living far from the equator, and people who cover all of their skin for religious or cultural reasons, are at high risk of vitamin deficiency (73, 74). One U.S. study reported that 42% of African American women between 15 and 49 years of age were vitamin D deficient compared to 4% of White women (75).

When the value defining vitamin D insufficiency is set at 75 nanomoles (nmol)/liter (L) or 30 nanograms (ng)/milliliter (mL), it is estimated that one billion people in the world are currently vitamin D deficient (76).

Authored by Dr Peter Engel in 2010, reviewed and updated by Dr Igor Bendik-Falconnier on 18.06.2017