NICE, the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence, recently published draft public guidance which significantly favours a more proactive approach in the administration of vitamin D, something doctors will hopefully start to take notice of (why they don't already is a mystery). If you click on the link to the guidance note, you will see the recommendations include:
- Clarifying which groups are at risk of deficiency and providing clarity on the wording of existing recommendations on vitamin d. This includes telling people they don't need to take vitamin d combined with calcium if their calcium intake is sufficient already.
- Increase access to vitamin d supplements and encourage promotion to at-risk groups.
- Public Health England should develop a national campaign emphasising the importance of vitamin d for good health.
- "Health and social care professionals should recommend a daily vitamin d supplement to people from at-risk groups at every available opportunity"
- Raising awareness of the importance of the vitamin among health care professionals.
NICE also note that from mid-October to the beginning of April, there is no ambient ultraviolet sunlight of the appropriate wavelength to generate vitamin d. During this period, the body relies its stores of the vitamin and obtains what it can from dietary intake.