The UK Chief Medical Officer is being forced to educate medical health professionals about the importance of Vitamin D supplementation after Vitamin D deficiency has been blamed for the recent deaths of at least 2 children in the UK. BBC news coverage has highlighted that Vitamin D deficiency is considered to be ‘a contributing’ factor in the deaths of a further 30 children.
Blood levels of Vitamin D are naturally maintained by exposure of the skin to sunlight. This means that increasing sun avoidance and high protection factor sunscreens are a huge factor in declining blood levels of Vitamin D. Widespread media warnings, usually promoted by skin cancer specialists or sunscreen companies, have caused many to literally fear the sun. But it’s crucial to recognise that short (15-20 minute) exposures (of about 80% of the body area) that don’t burn the skin are vitally important to health.