Diet, environmental factors, and lifestyle underlie the high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in healthy adults in Scotland, and supplementation reduces the proportion that are severely deficient

Lina Zgaga (Lead / Corresponding author), Evropi Theodoratou, Susan M. Farrington, Felix Agakov, Albert Tenesa, Marion Walker, Susan Knox, A. Michael Wallace, Roseanne Cetnarskyj, Geraldine McNeill, Janet Kyle, Mary E. Porteous, Malcolm G. Dunlop, Harry Campbell

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59 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Vitamin D deficiency has recently been implicated as a possible risk factor in the etiology of numerous diseases, including nonskeletal conditions. In humans, skin synthesis following exposure to UVB is a potent source of vitamin D, but in regions with lowUVB, individuals are at risk of vitaminDdeficiency.Our objectiveswere to describe the prevalence of vitaminDdeficiency and to investigate determinants of plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25-OHD) concentrations in a high northern latitude country. Detailed dietary, lifestyle, and demographic data were collected for 2235 healthy adults (21-82 y) from Scotland. Plasma 25-OHD was measuredby liquid chromatography-tandemMS.Amongstudy participants,34.5%were severely deficient (25-OHD<25nmol/L) and28.9%wereat highrisk of deficiency (25-40nmol/L). Only36.6%of participantswere at lowrisk of vitaminDdeficiencyor had adequate levels (>40 nmol/L). Among participants who were taking supplements, 21.3% had a May-standardized 25-OHD concentration (>50 nmol/L, 54.2% had 25-50 nmol/L, and 24.5% had (<25 nmol/L, whereas this was 15.6, 43.3, and 41%, respectively, among those who did not take supplements (P<0.0001). The most important sources of vitamin D were supplements and fish consumption. Vitamin D deficiency in Scotland is highly prevalent due to a combination of insufficient exposure to UVB and insufficient dietary intake. Higher dietary vitamin D intake modestly improved the plasma 25-OHD concentration (P = 0.02) and reduced the proportion of severely deficient individuals (P<0.0001). In regions with low UVB exposure, dietary and supplement intakemay bemuchmore important than previously thought and consideration should be given to increasing the current recommended dietary allowance of 0-10 mg/d for adults in Scotland.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1535-1542
Number of pages8
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Volume141
Issue number8
Early online date22 Jun 2011
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Aug 2011

Keywords

  • vitamin d deficiency
  • diet
  • environmental factors
  • adult
  • demography
  • life style
  • plasma
  • scotland
  • skin
  • vitamin d
  • recommended daily allowance
  • ultraviolet b radiation
  • fish intake

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    Zgaga, L., Theodoratou, E., Farrington, S. M., Agakov, F., Tenesa, A., Walker, M., Knox, S., Michael Wallace, A., Cetnarskyj, R., McNeill, G., Kyle, J., Porteous, M. E., Dunlop, M. G., & Campbell, H. (2011). Diet, environmental factors, and lifestyle underlie the high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency in healthy adults in Scotland, and supplementation reduces the proportion that are severely deficient. Journal of Nutrition, 141(8), 1535-1542. https://doi.org/10.3945/jn.111.140012