Evidence and suggestions for establishing vitamin D intake standards in Koreans for the prevention of chronic diseases

Jung Hyun Kim, Hyoung Su Park, Munkyong Pae, Kyung Hee Park, Oran Kwon

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review


BACKGROUND/OBJECTIVES: Vitamin D is produced in the skin during sun exposure and is also ingested from foods. The role of vitamin D needs to be considered in the prevention and management of various diseases. Moreover, since the majority of Koreans spend their days indoors, becoming susceptible to the risk of vitamin D deficiency. The current study aims to prepare a basis for determining dietary reference intake of vitamin D in Korea, by reviewing the evidence against various diseases and risks. MATERIALS/METHODS: Literature published in Korea and other countries between 2014 and 2018 was prioritized based on their study design and other criteria, and evaluated using the RoB 2.0 assessment form and United States Department of Agriculture Nutrition Evidence Library Conclusion Statement Evaluation Criteria. RESULTS: Of the 1,709 studies, 128 studies were included in the final systematic analysis after screening. To set the dietary reference intakes of vitamin D based on the selected articles, blood 25(OH)D levels and indicators of bone health were used collectively. Blood vitamin D levels and ultraviolet (UV) exposure time derived from the Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey were analyzed to establish the dietary reference intakes of vitamin D for each stage of the life cycle. The adequate intake levels of vitamin D, according to age and gender, were determined to be in the range of 5–15 μg/day, and the tolerable upper intake level was established at 25–100 μg/day. CONCLUSIONS: The most important variable for vitamin D nutrition is lifestyle. A balanced diet comprising foods with high contents of vitamin D is important, as is vitamin D synthesis after UV exposure. The adequate intake level of vitamin D mentioned in the 2015 Dietary Reference Intakes for Korean (KDRI) remained unchanged in the 2020 KDRI for the management of vitamin D nutrition in Koreans.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)S57-S69
JournalNutrition Research and Practice
StatePublished - May 2022

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
This research was supported by the Policy Research Program for Project No. 20180415A13-00, 25193068200, 25203084501 from the Ministry of Health and Welfare in 2018–2020.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2022 The Korean Nutrition Society and the Korean Society of Community Nutrition.


  • Dietary Reference Intake
  • Vitamin D
  • chronic disease
  • life cycle stages
  • systematic review


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