How much Vitamin D do you need?

How much Vitamin D do you need?

With 10-15 minutes of sun exposure on bare skin (without the application of sunscreen) 2-3 times a week between 10am and 3pm, you should be able to produce enough of the vitamin D that your body needs. However, during periods of low sun, such as winter, you should try increasing your intake of vitamin D rich foods, or consult with your doctor about taking a vitamin D supplement.

Below is a breakdown of the recommended dietary allowances (RDAs) guidelines for vitamin D provided by the (IOM) Institute of Medicine in the US(1):

Age Recommended Intake
Infants 0-12 months 400 IU (10 mcg)
Children 1-18 years 600 IU (15 mcg)
Adults to age 70 600 IU (15 mcg)
Adults over 70 800 IU (20 mcg
Pregnant or lactating women 600 IU (15 mcg) 

*One microgram (mcg) of Vitamin D is equal to 40 IU (International Units) of Vitamin D(1)

People who do not get enough vitamin D are ultimately left with a vitamin D deficiency. This can lead to serious side effects such as: osteomalacia, which causes muscle weakness and severe bone pain. If a child suffers from vitamin D deficiency, they can often develop rickets, which makes their bones soft and eventually bends them.

Other symptoms of vitamin D deficiency include:

A consultation with your healthcare provider is necessary should any of the above symptoms be experienced on an ongoing basis.



1. National Institutes of health - Office of dietary supplements. Available: 
[Accessed 26.10.2017]

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