According to new data analysed by biomarker tracking service 74% (or 34,277,678*) of UK adults aged 25 and over hover in the lower quarter of the normal vitamin D range or below, leaving them wide open to health complications like poor muscular strength, depression, fatigue and in severe cases. rickets or osteomalacia.
The same data also showed 27% fell below the normal range for vitamin D.
The data from Forth With Life highlighted that more women have inadequate vitamin D levels than men (77% and 72% respectively).
When looking at the age groups, 76% of those aged 25-34 and 45-54 have the biggest lack of vitamin D, followed by, 35-44 years old (73%) and 55-65, 71%.
2018 will go down as one of the sunniest summers on record for the UK, but this still may not be enough for the population’s vitamin D levels to be at their peak. Health professionals* have stated that we need 6 hours of sunshine per month to produce enough vitamin D, however, the increasing cloud cover during the Summer and the extensive rainfall has reduced the number of sunshine hours in the UK – 4 hours less every month since the mid-90s.
“The UK population needs to be aware of the importance of vitamin D and what their levels are,” says Forth founder, Sarah Bolt “that way everyone will know when they need to use supplements to keep their levels at their most optimal.
“The normal range for vitamin D is between 50 and 175 nmol/L with levels above 75 nmol/L advised for optimum health.
“However, almost three-quarters of Forth’s customers are in the bottom quartile (50-81.25 nmol/l) or below, averaging 72 nmol/L. The data gives a worrying insight into the state of the wider UK population’s vitamin D levels.” Explains Sarah Bolt.
Currently, Public Health England advises that everyone above the age of one should consider supplementation, at least during the autumn and winter months. Whilst, those at greater risk, such as people with dark skin and the elderly, should supplement all year long. However, not everyone is the same and regular review of personal vitamin D levels gives individuals a more accurate insight into when they require supplementation.
“Knowing your vitamin D levels can give you a real clue about how your body is functioning, particularly as deficiency can have so many side effects including depression, fatigue and in severe cases rickets. Gaining insight and understanding of your body’s key biomarkers, such as vitamin D, will help individuals to make informed decisions about their lifestyle, identify supplementation needs and protect their future health.” Added Bolt.
Forth With Life analysed their internal data on the 18th of September 2018.
*Calculation: 46,321,187 population (UK adults aged 25 and over) x 0,74 = 34,277,678.
Population based on the latest ONS data: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/populationandmigration/populationestimates/datasets/populationestimatesforukenglandandwalesscotlandandnorthernireland
The full report can be viewed here: https://www.forthwithlife.co.uk/blog/why-we-all-need-to-take-vitamin-d-supplements/