What is the recommended daily allowance (RDA) for vitamin D?

Rebecca S. Reeves
Nutrition & Dietetics
Based on the most recent guidelines from the Institute of Medicine, adults 1 through 70 should consume 600 international units (IU) per day and adults aged 71 and older should consume 800 IU per day from food and supplements. These experts concluded that there is clear evidence that Vitamin D had bone benefits. But they further stated that current research is inconclusive as to whether higher Vitamin D intakes can decrease the risk for other chronic diseases.

The Institute of Medicine (IOM) is an independent, nonprofit organization that works outside of government to provide unbiased and authoritative advice to decision makers and the public.
Jessica Crandall
Nutrition & Dietetics

The RDA recommends 600 IUs of Vitamin D/day. However, many people are low and don't even know it. If you live in a cold climate, wear sunscreen, and/or live far from the equator, these are all things that can affect your vitamin D absorption. 1000-2000 IUs is considered a good maintenance dosage, but based on what your vitamin D labs show, you may need a supplement as high as 50,000 IUs 1-2x/wk. to get you back to adequate vitamin D levels. Please speak with your doctor and dietitian about getting tested and supplementation appropriate for you.

Ruth Frechman
Nutrition & Dietetics

The recommended amounts of vitamin D have recently increased. For birth to 12 months 400 IU; 1-70 years 600 IUs; 71 and older 800 IUs. I recommended getting your vitamin D tested. Many people don't go out in the sun or eat enough foods containing vitamin D. Your levels may be low, and you don't even know it.

Amy Jamieson-Petonic
Nutrition & Dietetics
The Daily Recommended intake for Vitamin D is 400 IU (International Units) per day. However, there may be additional research to support that more than the RDI is recommended. Furthermore, as we get older, our need for Vitamin D increases, and it may be recommended to consume 1,000-2,000 IU per day. It is also important to note that you want to consume Vitamin D3, as opposed to Vitamin D2.
Leopold D. Galland, MD
Internal Medicine
The Institute of Medicine (IOM) panel concluded that a total intake of 600 IU/day vitamin D from food and supplements would get most North Americans to a level of 20 nanograms per milliliter (the blood level of vitamin D that is considered adequate). They left sunlight out of the vitamin D recommended daily allowance (RDA) equation because it is hard to measure someone's sun exposure.

So, they increased the vitamin D recommended daily allowance (RDA) for young adults from 200 to 600 IU/day and for older adults from 400 to 600 IU/day. For those over age 71 the vitamin D RDA was raised to 800 IU/day.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.