Action to combat vitamin D deficiency
WRITTEN QUESTION E-3240/10
by Elena Oana Antonescu (PPE)
to the Commission
Vitamin D deficiency is a major health problem associated with increased risks of osteoporosis, heart disease, tuberculosis, certain forms of cancer, diabetes, periodontitis, multiple sclerosis, chronic fatigue, depression, loss of muscular strength and the formation of adipose tissue. It is estimated that over 50 % of adults suffer from vitamin D deficiency, with numbers significantly exceeding the European average in certain countries (the problem being more acute in Spain and the eastern European countries than in the northern European countries).
The problem has many causes, depending on geographic location, age, exposure to the sun and diet. A comprehensive approach to it must take account of such diverse factors if an effective solution is to be found. In general, efforts to resolve the problem have been concentrated on vitamin D supplements contained in pharmaceuticals or vitaminised foods.
Does the Commission intend to propose a set of harmonised EU policies to reduce vitamin D deficiency levels, aside from setting minimum and maximum dose levels regarding food supplements, which get to grips with other contributory factors?
-  Lips P., Vitamin D status and nutrition in Europe and Asia, The Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, Volume 103, Issues 3‑5, March 2007, Pages 620‑625, 10.1016/j.jsbmb.2006.12.076.
-  Answer by Mr Dalli on behalf of the Commission to Written Question E‑1346/10.
OJ C 138 E, 07/05/2011