The ABC of Vitamin D: A qualitative study of the knowledge and attitudes regarding Vitamin D deficiency amongst selected population groups

Billie Bonevski, Jamie Bryant, Sylvie Lambert, Irena Brozek, Vanessa Rock

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

22 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Objective: In Australia, vitamin D supply in food is limited, and sun exposure is the main source of vitamin D. However skin cancer risk is high, and the need to gain some sun exposure for adequate vitamin D is challenging public health messages to use protection in the sun. The complex vitamin D public health message may be confusing the public and, in particular, those at highest risk for vitamin D deficiency. This study explored vitamin D and sun exposure attitudes, knowledge and practices of some groups considered at risk of vitamin D deficiency and those delivering healthy sun exposure messages to children. Method: 52 adults participated in six focus groups. Results: Results corroborated with previous research showing low levels of vitamin D knowledge. Individual and environmental barriers to receiving adequate sun exposure were also identified. Conclusions and Implications: The message advocating balanced sun exposure to produce adequate vitamin D needs to be made clearer and be more effectively communicated. Findings provide insights to aid development of appropriate public health messages for safe sun exposure and vitamin D, especially for vulnerable groups.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)915-927
Number of pages13
JournalNutrients
Volume5
Issue number3
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Mar 2013
Externally publishedYes

Keywords

  • Focus groups
  • Knowledge and attitudes
  • Vitamin D

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