Dr. Heaney shares the population that is at the highest risk for calcium and vitamin D deficiencies.
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African-Americans, or people of color generally, are most at risk for both calcium and vitamin D deficiencies, but for different reasons. African-Americans have been led to believe that they cannot tolerate milk and so as a result, they tend to have a reduced dairy intake and that means they’re low in calcium; they’re low in the vitamin D that would have come in with the milk. They’re low in protein, they’re low in phosphorus, they’re low in potassium. African-American populations stay away from milk are multiply deficient. They cannot get it from the foods that would otherwise be available in their diet, but it turns out that white women are deficient in both as well although not quite so severely as it might be the case when we come to the African-American contrast, for example. Probably two-thirds to three-fourths of middle-aged and older white women are low in vitamin D status. Not as severely deficient as the African-Americans, but deficient nonetheless.
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