Who needs to take a Vitamin D supplement and why?
We know Vitamin D is hugely important for expectant mums and babies up to one year – we also know that recent recommendations state that all children aged 1-4 years should be on a Vitamin D supplement during the winter, as they can’t get enough from the sun or their diets during these months, it’s not likely to achieve the RDA through diet alone.
 
In terms of everyone else, the HSE recommends that all adults take a Vitamin D supplement – as most of our vitamin D comes from summer sunlight on our skin, we’re not likely to get enough of it in Ireland
Vitamin D is also found in some foods, such as:
  • oily fish, such as salmon and sardines
  • eggs
  • fortified fat spreads
  • fortified breakfast cereals
The body stores Vitamin D in reserve, and an adult that is following a healthy exercise and diet regime, will have sufficient reserves. However, since November 2020 the  Department of Health is recommending all adults over 65 take a Vitamin D supplement.
 
Diets of adults and older adults don’t always include a regular intake of natural sources of Vitamin D, such as oily fish, eggs, meats, and Vitamin D-fortified foods. And because of our latitude we’re less likely to get it from the limited summer sunshine we have in Ireland.
 
This means that supplements are really necessary for everyone in winter, especially older adults, who need sufficient Vitamin D all year round for bone and muscle health.
 
Vitamin D has many important functions, including regulating the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body, which are needed to keep bones and teeth healthy. It is also important for immune system function and for muscle function, it counters inflammation and may help against respiratory infections.
 
A lack of Vitamin D can also lead to osteomalacia, or soft bones, which can cause frequent bone fractures, muscle weakness and bone pain. Vitamin D also contributes to the normal function of the immune system and may help prevent respiratory infections. 
 
The DailyD supplement is available at McCauley’s Pharmacy in both capsules and a vegan spray at doses to suit different needs. They have a pharmacist helpline if you can’t get there in person, or you are calling on behalf of your elderly relative who cannot get out at the moment, who you think would benefit.
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The new FamilyD Vitamin D Range is available at McCauley's Pharmacy

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