Vitamin D in Household Food Supplies of Homebound Older Adults Receiving Home-Delivered Meals

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Abstract

Food sources of vitamin D become increasingly important as the ability of older adults to activate vitamin D produced from sun exposure declines. Household food supplies of homebound older adults receiving home-delivered meals contained modest amounts of vitamin D with key sources being milk, fish and shellfish, eggs and egg substitutes, ready-to-eat cereals, and spreads. To improve access to this nutrient, an economical adjunct to home-delivered meals programs is providing an additional meal consisting of vitamin D–fortified milk and ready-to-eat cereal, pouches of tuna or salmon and vitamin D–fortified juice, and/or vitamin D supplements. Improving vitamin D status could help ameliorate cognitive decline, falls, and skeletal strength and decrease institutionalization of older adults and health care costs.

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