Vitamin D and lifestyle

Vitamin D is currently a hot topic in research circles, possibly because surveys have suggested that more than half the population of over-50s could have a deficiency. This proportion is even greater in the obese – who in turn are a growing proportion of the population.

Vitamin D is critical for skeletal mineralisation as is well known, however attention is also being turned to non-skeletal effects of vitamin D deficiency; for example, in relation to immune dysfunction. 

Researchers have been focusing on providing answers to some of the following  key ­vitamin D questions.

Where does Vitamin D come from?

Vitamin D is initially generated in the skin from the non-enzymatic conversion of provitamin D3 to previtamin D3. 

Dietary intake is usually relatively limited, as few foods, with the exception of certain fish types, contain sizeable amounts. Dietary sources include mushrooms and