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Vitamin D

Vitamin D helps regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body.

These nutrients are needed to keep bones, teeth and muscles healthy.

A lack of vitamin D can lead to bone deformities such as rickets in children, and bone pain caused by a condition called osteomalacia in adults.

Good sources of Vitamin D

From about late March/early April to the end of September, most people should be able to get all the Vitamin D they need from sunlight.

The body creates Vitamin D from direct sunlight on the skin when outdoors.

But between October and early March we don't get enough Vitamin D from sunlight.

Vitamin D is also found in a small number of foods. Sources include:

  • Oily fish – such as salmon, sardines, herring and mackerel

  • Red meat

  • Liver

  • Egg yolks

  • Fortified foods – such as most fat spreads and some breakfast cereals

In the UK, cows' milk is generally not a good source of Vitamin D because it isn't fortified, as it is in some other countries.

Another source of Vitamin D is dietary supplements.

How much Vitamin D do I need?

Babies up to the age of 1 year need to take between 8.5 to 10 micrograms of Vitamin D a day.

A microgram (mc