A new study on the effects of vitamin D found that too much may lead to slower reaction times and increase the risk of falling among older people.
Without this, our bodies cannot absorb calcium, which is the main component of bone.
Our bodies synthesize vitamin D when sunlight reaches the skin.
The amount of vitamin D that our skin produces depends on several factors, including where we live, season, and skin pigmentation. During winter, vitamin D production may decrease or be completely absent.
We can also get vitamin D from salmon, sardines, canned tuna, oysters, and shrimp. People who are vegetarian can obtain this vitamin by consuming egg yolks, mushrooms, and fortified food products such as soy milk, cereal, and oatmeal.
According to the National Institutes of Health (NIH), the recommended daily amount of vitamin D is:
- infants 0–12 months: 400 international units (IU)
- children 1–18 years: 600 IU
- adults to age 70: 600 IU
- adults over 70: 800 IU
- pregnant or lactating women: 600 IU
The slower reaction time may have other negative outcomes such as potentially increasing the risk of falling and fractures," says senior study author Sue Shapses.
"This is possible since other researchers have found that vitamin D supplementation at about 2,000 IU daily or more increased risk of falls, but they did not understand the cause."