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Evidence-Based Resource Summary

Strength of Evidence: 
4 out of 4
4 out of 4
Year Published: 

Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium and Vitamin D

Description of Resource: 
Calcium and vitamin D are 2 essential nutrients long known for their role in bone health. Since 2000, the public has heard conflicting messages about other benefits of these nutrients—especially vitamin D—and also about how much calcium and vitamin D they need to be healthy. To help clarify this issue, the United States and Canadian governments asked the Institute of Medicine (IOM) to assess the current data on health outcomes associated with calcium and vitamin D as well as to update the nutrient reference values known as Dietary Reference Intakes. In this report, IOM proposes new reference values that are based on much more information and higher quality studies than were available when the values for these nutrients were first set in 1997. IOM finds that the evidence supports a role for vitamin D and calcium in bone health but not in other health conditions. Further, emerging evidence indicates that too much of these nutrients may be harmful, challenging the concept that “more is better.”

Evidence-Based Resource Details

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Developed By: 
Institute of Medicine
Developer Type: 
Non-Federal Government
Healthy People 2020 Topic Area(s): 
Arthritis, Osteoporosis, and Chronic Back Conditions
Healthy People 2020 Objectives: 
Resource Type: 
Systematic Review
Ross A, Taylor C, Yaktine A, Del Valle H, and the Committee to Review Dietary Reference Intakes for Vitamin D and Calcium, Food and Nutrition Board. Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium and Vitamin D [Internet]. Washington, DC: National Academies Press; 2011. Available from: