Certain groups among the European populations are at high risk of
vitamin D deficiency either because of sequestration from
sunlight as a matter of social or religious habit, or their age,
or because of special physiological circumstances, which create
an extra demand for effective absorption of calcium. It is on the
quantification of the deficiencies in three such groups and the
feasibility of their repair by food fortification that the
Three objectives are as follows:
- To determine the
effects of dietary intervention with vitamin D on the pattern of
calcium metabolism with particular reference to skeletal changes
in: Adolescent girls, Elderly individuals, Muslim
- To determine, in
a longitudinal study in 5 countries of Europe, seasonal variation
in vitamin D insufficiencies and to relate them to measured solar
exposure and dietary vitamin intakes both from natural and from
- To develop
specially prepared bread fortified with vitamin D.
To fulfil the objectives five work packages will be needed
- Adolescent Girls - Impact of vitamin D on bone
- Elderly - Determination of lowest beneficial dose.
- Muslim Families – Vitamin D, bone accretion and lack of
- Five Countries – Contribution of diet and sun exposure
for vitamin D status
- Fortification of Bread – Bioavailability of vitamin D
from a non-fatty food.
The Co-ordinator will appoint a Project Management Team of all
the Work Package Leaders that will act to drive the project, and
to ensure that the deliverables are made available and milestones
achieved at the time stated.
The three intervention studies on high risk populations
of adolescent girls, elderly and a selected population of Muslim
families will be used to assist in the determination of the scale
of food fortification to derive beneficial effects.
The trans-national study will determine in different
environmental and cultural conditions the influence of seasonal
variation on vitamin D levels. Simultaneous measurements of
exposure to sunlight will be made.
The final work package will explore the feasibility of food
fortification of a non-fatty-food (bread) with vitamin D.