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American Academy of Dermatology Issues Updated Position Statement on Vitamin D
Date:7/14/2009

aintaining adequate vitamin D levels. Concern about vitamin D should not lead people to forego sun protection, but rather prompt a conversation with their physician about how to ensure adequate and safe vitamin D intake while guarding against skin cancer ."

The Academy's new position statement notes that the National Academy of Sciences Institute of Medicine guidelines for vitamin D are the standard reference for advising patients on proper minimum intake levels. The currently recommended adequate intake levels established by the Institute of Medicine may be revised upward due to evolving research on the increasing clinical benefit of vitamin D. The statement also notes that the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Dietary Guidelines discuss a daily total dose of 1,000 IU (International Units) of vitamin D for supplementation of those at-risk for vitamin D insufficiency.

The Academy's new position statement also asserts that there is no scientifically proven, safe threshold of sun or indoor tanning device exposure that allows for maximum vitamin D synthesis in the skin without increasing the risk of skin cancer. Also, while numerous studies suggest an association between low levels of vitamin D and an increased risk of certain types of cancers and diseases, the Academy emphasizes that the causal relationship of vitamin D to these disease outcomes has yet to be demonstrated with clinical trials.

"It is well documented in the medical literature that unprotected exposure to UV radiation from natural sunlight or indoor tanning devices causes skin damage. There is no current research available that provides a safe limit for sun exposure to maximize vitamin D production that does not put the individuals health at risk for developing skin cancer," stated Dr. Pariser. "In addition, contrary to some reported information about vitamin D and the prevention of certain cancers and diseases - other than for bone
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SOURCE American Academy of Dermatology
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