Exploring Vitamin D Fortification Nationwide

Vitamin D deficiency is a significant health concern in India, affecting a large percentage of the population across all socioeconomic and geographic strata. Despite the abundance of sunlight, cultural practices and dietary habits contribute to this epidemic, leading to adverse health outcomes such as rickets, osteoporosis, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, cancer, and infections like tuberculosis. This is a cause for concern for a developing country like India, which has the world’s largest population. An unhealthy population can be a substantial economic burden for India. While a number of studies have raised concerns related to the growing Vitamin D deficiencies in India, hardly any takes a comprehensive approach and has created an action-oriented work plan to address the issue. This project aims to fill that lacuna.

The project will take a comprehensive approach with the engagement of all public and private stakeholders at the central and state levels to create a target-oriented action plan to eradicate Vitamin D deficiencies and implement food fortification in India. With the objective of evidence-based policymaking, it will develop a comprehensive report, facilitating stakeholders’ engagement and laying down the action plans. The report will present the current scenario of Vitamin D deficiency, quantify the economic burden, and highlight the health impacts. It will identify the reason for the deficiencies, examine the policy gaps and other issues, and make recommendations to eradicate Vitamin D deficiencies and food fortification.