Background/Aims: This study uses a novel modelling approach based on serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D (25OHD) to estimate the effect of voluntary vitamin D fortification of breakfast cereals (BC) on vitamin D status of Australian and New Zealand (ANZ) populations.
Methods: Vitamin D intakes from BC containing 5 µg vitamin D/serve were calculated using ANZ nutrition surveys under several modelling scenarios. Increments in intakes were converted to increments in serum 25OHD using a reported dose-response relationship and then added to population distributions of serum 25OHD from national surveys. The proportion of the population with low and high serum 25OHD was calculated before and after fortification for different BC consumption levels.
Results: Consumption of vitamin D-fortified BC under all scenarios predicted annual mean serum 25OHD concentrations which were within the physiological range. Currently, about 13% of Australians and 21% of New Zealanders have low vitamin D status using 40 nM as a serum 25OHD cut-point. Consumption of vitamin D-fortified BC would decrease this prevalence to about 1.5%. Currently, about 1.4% of the population have high serum 25OHD using a conservative 25OHD cut-point (125 nM), and this prevalence increased to 5.5-7.5% for the high BC consumers, or “worst-case” scenario.
Conclusions: This study showed that BC fortification at the modelled vitamin D amounts would potentially increase the vitamin D status of individuals whose status is inadequate. Since usual BC consumption would be much less than the modelled worst-case scenario, consumers are unlikely to be at risk of exceeding safe vitamin D intakes.
Funding source(s): N/A