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Sunshine News #1: You’re only getting a tenth of what you need
No, you really aren’t. Unless you want skin cancer. What WDDTY actually want to sell you is pills. It must be pills: they say that sunscreen is carcinogenic, so they cannot possible be advocating more sun exposure, because that would be a literally murderous level of stupid.
People who have been following the RDA (recommended dietary allowance) amounts for vitamin D could be severely malnourished: scientists have discovered the recommendation is only one-tenth of what it needs to be.
The current RDA forthe vitamin is 600 IU/ day for everyone up to the age of 70, and 800 IU/dayforthose who are older. But a team of American researchers, in response to a letter by a pair of Canadian
researchers calling on all public-health groups and agencies to urgently change the current too-low RDA for vitamin D, say the
amount we really should be getting from all sources, including sunshine, is 7,000 IU/day.
Doses that large are normally promoted by the “orthomolecular” quacks. Who are these scientists and researchers?
We have a source: Nutrients, 2015; 7: 1688-90. The first thing to note about this is that it is not a published article, it’s a letter. WDDTY readers probably don’t know the difference. Letters do not go through peer review, they are simply expressions of opinion.
The letter responds to another letter, again not a paper. Both are contingent on an estimate of appropriate serum levels of 25-hydroxyvitamin D. The letters are estimates based on regressions – they suggest a need for further research, theya re not a confident finding, and they are absolutely not a cast-in-stone fact, as WDDTY promotes them
And even this amount is way below the safe upper limit for teenagers and adults, which may be as high as 10,000 IU/day, says Cedric Garland of the University of California at San Diego.
Garland is a darling of the orthomolecular crowd.
In fact this adds very little to what is already known: that people living in Northern latitudes may, in later life, require vitamin D supplementation.
The idea that large amounts of supplemental vitamin D are essential to life in the otherwise healthy adult human, is evolutionarily improbable and unsupported by data.