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New study challenges one-size-fits-all approach to vitamin D supplementation guidelines across different populations

A recent study conducted by scientists from Trinity College Dublin delves into the complexities surrounding achieving optimal vitamin D levels across diverse populations. Despite extensive research on the factors influencing vitamin D levels, deficiencies remain prevalent. Published in Clinical Nutrition, the study analyzed data from half a million individuals in the UK, calculating individualized estimates of ambient ultraviolet-B (UVB) levels, crucial for vitamin D synthesis in the skin.

The analysis unveiled significant insights: ambient UVB emerged as a pivotal predictor of vitamin D status, even in regions with limited sunlight like the UK. Additionally, age, sex, body mass index (BMI), cholesterol levels, and vitamin D supplementation notably influenced individual responses to UVB exposure. Notably, increased BMI and age correlated with reduced vitamin D synthesis in response to UVB.

The authors anticipate their findings will contribute to ongoing discussions surrounding vitamin D supplementation guidelines.