Objectives: Globally, vitamin D intake from food and supplements is low, consistent with the high prevalence of low serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentration. The aims of this study were to assess vitamin D intake and major relevant food contributors among Greek adults and to propose subsequent policies for intervention.
Methods: Vitamin D from diet and supplements was estimated in adults (≥19 y of age) from two 24-h recalls using the Automated Multiple-Pass Method (vitamin D from food intake) and a drug and supplement questionnaire (vitamin D supplements). Over- and underreporters were identified using the Goldberg cutoff. The final analysis included 2218 individuals. The National Research Council method was used to account for within- and between-person variation. Vitamin D food intake adequacy was estimated based on the estimated average requirement (EAR) of 10 mcg/d, set by the Institute of Medicine. Major foods contributing to intake were identified and the effect on meeting EAR, of a potential food fortification example was examined.
Results: Median vitamin D intake from food ranged from 1.16 to 1.72 and 1.01 to 1.26mcg/d in different age groups in men and women, respectively. Major food sources of vitamin D were fish (46%), meat (15%), and cereals (12%); however, >90% of the population in all age groups failed to meet the EAR, even when supplemental use was accounted for (~5% of the population consumed supplements).
Conclusion: Overall vitamin D intake is below the average requirements. Public health policies to increase the consumption of foods high in vitamin D or food fortification may significantly reduce the percentage of individuals who do not meet the recommendations.
Keywords: Greece; Vitamin D; adults; diet; fortification.
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