Video: Most people in the UK would benefit from vitamin D supplements

Low vitamin D levels are a 'big problem' across the UK, according to a leading rheumatologist.

A 'worrying' number of people in the UK suffer from insufficient vitamin D yet it is almost impossible to boost levels with diet, said Dr Richard Keen, director of the Metabolic Bone Disease Unit at the Royal National Orthopaedic Hospital in Stanmore, north London.

Consultant rheumatologist Dr Keen was speaking at the Women's Health in Primary Care conference in London this week, organised by the journal MIMS Women's Health.

He said around 60% of people aged between 19-24 had insufficient vitamin D levels, with the number falling slightly in middle age before rising to 70% of 65-85 year olds.

'It is a big problem across the spectrum,' said Dr Keen.

To raise vitamin D levels significantly, a patient would have to eat 2.5 portions of tuna a day or drink 50 pints of milk or eat nine large eggs, said Dr Keen.

Vitamin D deficiency is known to cause rickets and a variety of bone-thinning diseases. For osteoporosis drugs to work effectively, users require adequate levels of vitamin D and calcium.

Dr Keen also warned that some laboratories miss ‘masses' of patients with insufficient levels of vitamin D, by only flagging up those with full blown deficiency.

Any concentration lower than 75nm/ml could be considered insufficient, he said.

Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Register

Already registered?

Sign in

Follow Us:

Just published

Practices handed one-month opt-out window as revamped network DES unveiled

Practices handed one-month opt-out window as revamped network DES unveiled

NHS England has unveiled a revamped DES package for 2020/21 confirming new targets,...

GPs delivered huge rise in face-to-face consultations in week before NHS England letter

GPs delivered huge rise in face-to-face consultations in week before NHS England letter

GPs delivered a huge increase in face-to-face appointments in the week before NHS...

RCGP facing legal action over stance on assisted dying

RCGP facing legal action over stance on assisted dying

The RCGP is facing legal action over its decision to remain opposed to assisted dying...

Medeconomics Live aims to help practices thrive under the new GP contract

Medeconomics Live aims to help practices thrive under the new GP contract

The one-day, virtual Medeconomics Live conference aims to provide practices with...

GPs face wave of abuse and complaints after NHS England face-to-face appointments claims

GPs face wave of abuse and complaints after NHS England face-to-face appointments claims

GP practices have faced a wave of abuse and complaints after a letter from NHS England...

Government denies plan to make GPs 'gatekeepers' of COVID-19 testing

Government denies plan to make GPs 'gatekeepers' of COVID-19 testing

The government has denied plans to make GPs 'gatekeepers' of the struggling COVID-19...