Move It & Lose It with Prof Trim

Vitamin D deficiency: a lack of sunlight or something else?
Vitamin D is a pro-hormone, which comes from sunlight, or artificial UV light exposure, as well as some types of foods (oily fish, some meat sources and fortified processed foods). Sources from sunlight however are more potent. And Australians have plenty of this. So it seems hardly likely that they would be suffering from a vitamin D deficiency. Yet that’s just what recent evidence shows. Surveys support the fact that up to half of the elderly may be vitamin D deficient, leading to problems of bone weakness.


Some experts have suggested that our skin cancer messages may have been too successful – that people aren’t getting the 20 minutes of sunlight exposure a day which is sufficient. Others say that sun creams may now be too effective. This latter idea has been dismissed because adequate UV light gets through sun cream with sufficient exposure. A more likely scenario is the rise of obesity and inactivity, which also cause Vitamin D deficiency. Perhaps, again, it’s the whole lifestyle that needs to be looked at.

Dr Garry Egger aka Prof Trim

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