Vitamin D Guidelines: New Recommendations for Healthy Adults Under 75

The latest Clinical Practice Guidelines from the US Endocrine Society suggest that healthy adults under 75 may not benefit from extra vitamin D supplements beyond the recommended daily intake. The guidelines also advise against routine testing for vitamin D levels in this group to be unnecessary.

According to the guidelines, individuals aged 1 to 70 years old should aim for a daily intake of 600 IU of vitamin D, while those over 70 years old should increase their intake to 800 IU per day. Specific groups such as children, pregnant individuals, adults over 75, and those with high-risk prediabetes may require higher doses of vitamin D, surpassing the daily allowance suggested by the Institutes of Medicine.

While vitamin D has been associated with various health conditions, the effectiveness of supplementation in reducing disease risk and determining optimal blood levels for health have been subjects of debate. The new guidelines, based on clinical trials, seek to clarify the use and testing of vitamin D in healthy individuals without underlying conditions that require treatment.

The recommendations also highlight the potential benefits of higher vitamin D doses for certain groups, such as individuals over 75, pregnant people, adults with prediabetes, and children and adolescents. However, routine testing for vitamin D levels is not recommended for any group, according to the guidelines.

Dr. Marie Demay of Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital, who chaired the panel, emphasized the importance of determining vitamin D requirements for a healthy population without impairments in absorption or action. The panel’s key recommendations include avoiding excessive vitamin D supplements for healthy adults under 75 and considering higher doses for specific groups based on individual needs.

Despite ongoing research on the role of vitamin D in health, the panel noted limitations in existing evidence and highlighted the need for more comprehensive studies to establish specific thresholds for adequacy and disease prevention. The guideline was developed using rigorous methods to ensure impartiality and provide evidence-based recommendations for managing vitamin D intake.

The new guidelines are set to be published in the August 2024 issue of The Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism and aim to provide clarity on vitamin D use for disease prevention in generally healthy populations.

Dr. Marie Demay is a renowned endocrinologist affiliated with Harvard Medical School and Massachusetts General Hospital. She specializes in research on vitamin D and its impact on health, particularly in populations with specific medical conditions. Dr. Demay has led numerous studies and clinical trials investigating the role of vitamin D in disease prevention and management. She is widely recognized for her contributions to the field of endocrinology and continues to advocate for evidence-based practices in healthcare.