Does everyone need supplemental vitamin D and calcium?

Probably not everyone, but certainly the majority of the population does. According to the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), most Americans do not meet the daily recommendations of calcium (1000-1300 mg/day) or the current higher recommendation of vitamin D. Female adolescents have the lowest intake overall. The safest and most practical way to increase the body’s level of vitamin D is by taking a daily multivitamin mineral formula (MVM) that contains between 600-1200 IU of vitamin D. The new recommended intake is 600 international units (IU) daily for adults up to age 70, which is three times more than the previous recommendation and most experts don't believe the new one is high enough. For people older than 70, the new goal is 800 IU/day. Considering research shows that most people never met the old low recommendations, reaching these new goals with food alone is probably not going to happen for most people. Food sources of vitamin D are scarce or not popular and sunlight (under the right conditions skin can produce some vitamin D when exposed to sunlight) is no longer recommended as a source because it increases the risk of skin cancer and is too variable. Additionally, as dairy products, especially milk, have become less popular with many teens and adults, daily needed calcium levels are rarely reached, leading to poor bone health as we age. Daily shortages of both vitamin D and calcium are associated with increased risks of age-related diseases and cancers. So make a conscious effort to follow the recommendation below. First, make sure you are consuming a healthy diet; good examples include the meal plans provided in the Sharecare Fitness application. Then add as shown to complete our health recommendation:

Take daily:

• Targeted Multivitamin & Mineral with at 600-1000 IU of vitamin D (Take with a meal)

As needed:

• Super Calcium+

o Use if you do not meet the daily needs of calcium (~1000-1200 mg) and Vitamin D (1000 IU) from sunlight, multivitamin and food intake. Take as directed

• Super Omega-3

 Take 1 daily if not consuming 2-4 servings per week of fatty fish

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