Vitamin D

What about this essential vitamin?

Weighing the evidence

What about Vitamin D?

Vitamin D is best known for its role in keeping bones and teeth healthy.

Vitamin D is found in a limited number of foods, either occurring naturally or added as a fortified source. Egg yolks and fatty fish contain vitamin D naturally, whereas cow’s milk, infant formula, and margarine are fortified with Vitamin D as required by the Canadian government.  

Sunshine vitamin

Skin Exposure

Vitamin D is often called the sunshine vitamin because your skin can produce the vitamin when exposed to the sun.

It’s true, exposure to UVR contributes to vitamin D levels, but there is no established “safe” threshold of exposure for vitamin D that does not put a person at risk for skin cancer. For that reason, intentional UVR exposure to meet Vitamin D requirements is not recommended.

Use safe sources of Vitamin D

Recommendations

Intentional UVR exposure to meet Vitamin D requirements is not recommended.

Instead, use sources of vitamin D that are safer than UVR exposure (dietary sources, like fortified foods, and vitamin D supplements). Speak to your doctor or pharmacist about adding a vitamin D supplement to your daily routine.

View sources

The Surgeon General’s Call to Action to Prevent Skin Cancer. Washington, DC: U.S. Dept of Health and Human Services, Office of the Surgeon General; 2014 Pg 19

“Vitamin D.” Vitamin D – SunSmart. SunSmart Australia, n.d. Web. 12 May 2017. View

The Recommended Core Content for Sun Safety Messages in Canada. Briefing on the Results of the 2014/15 National Consensus Process.