We’re here to guide you through the coronavirus lockdown.
Should We Be Wearing Homemade Face Masks?
While there’s no sufficient evidence to support the recommendation of vitamin D for reducing the risk of Covid-19, public health experts agree that people should continue to take it for general health purposes if they aren’t getting outdoors as much as they usually would.
Where do we get vitamin D from?
In the spring and summer months, most of us can get enough vitamin D naturally. Our bodies generate it from direct sunlight on the skin when we’re outdoors and it’s also found in a small number of foods such as oily fish, red meat, liver, egg yolks and fortified foods (like cereal).
But obviously, with people spending longer periods indoors due to the UK lockdown, there’s a concern we aren’t getting enough sunlight to make sufficient levels of vitamin D. PHE and the NHS, therefore, recommend buying supplements throughout lockdown.
You can buy these at most pharmacies and supermarkets, however “do not buy more than you need,” says the NHS. Women and children who qualify for the Healthy Start scheme can get free supplements.
How much vitamin D should you have?
Breastfed babies (from birth to one year of age) should be given a daily supplement containing 8.5 to 10 micrograms of vitamin D, the Department of Health and Social Care recommends.
Formula-fed babies should not be given a vitamin D supplement until they’re having less than 500ml (about a pint) of infant formula a day, as infant formula is fortified with vitamin D.
Children aged one to four years old should be given a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms of vitamin D.
Everyone else (including pregnant and breastfeeding women) should consider taking a daily supplement containing 10 micrograms of vitamin D, particularly if they aren’t getting outdoors as much.
The public is warned against taking more than 100 micrograms of vitamin D a day, however, as this may be harmful.