Recent Blog Articles
Does your child need to bathe every day?
Can flavonoids help fend off forgetfulness?
Can physical or cognitive activity prevent dementia?
Wondering how much your medical care will cost? New rules could help
Long-lasting healthy changes: Doable and worthwhile
The sore throat checklist: What parents need to know
A new treatment for obesity
Remember the flu? Yep, it's that time again
3 ways to build brain-boosting social connections
Grandparenting: Ready to move for family?
How much vitamin D should I take?
Ask the doctor
Image: © Boarding1Now/Thinkstock
Q. I'm confused about vitamin D. How much should I take?
A. There's considerable controversy as to whether most people should take a vitamin D supplement at all. Most of the vitamin D in our bodies is made by our skin, when it is exposed to sunlight. In contrast to most other vitamins, we don't get much vitamin D in our diet. Authorities recommend, however, that children from age 1, and adults through age 70, take 600 international units (IU) daily, and that adults 71 years and older take 800 IU daily. People with, or at risk for, certain bone diseases need to take more than this amount. There's general agreement that doses above 4,000 IU daily can be toxic to adults, with lower doses toxic to kids.
To continue reading this article, you must log in.
Subscribe to Harvard Health Online for immediate access to health news and information from Harvard Medical School.
- Research health conditions
- Check your symptoms
- Prepare for a doctor's visit or test
- Find the best treatments and procedures for you
- Explore options for better nutrition and exercise
I'd like to receive access to Harvard Health Online for only $4.99 a month.Sign Me Up
Already a member? Login ».
As a service to our readers, Harvard Health Publishing provides access to our library of archived content. Please note the date of last review or update on all articles. No content on this site, regardless of date, should ever be used as a substitute for direct medical advice from your doctor or other qualified clinician.