Scientific opinion on the tolerable upper intake level for vitamin D, including the derivation of a conversion factor for calcidiol monohydrate

D Turck, T Bohn, J Castenmiller, S de Henauw, K-I Hirsch-Ernst, HK Knutsen, A Maciuk, I Mangelsdorf, HJ McArdle, K. Pentieva, A Siani, F Thies, S Tsabouri, M Vinceti, S Lanham-New, G Passeri, I Craciun, L Fabiani, RF De Sousa, L MartinoS Martinez, A Naska

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Following two requests from the European Commission (EC), the EFSA Panel on Nutrition, Novel Food sand Food Allergens (NDA) was asked to deliver a scientific opinion on the revision of the tolerable upper intake level (UL) for vitamin D and to propose a conversion factor (CF) for calcidiol monohydrate into vitamin D3for labelling purposes. Vitamin D refers to ergocalciferol (vitamin D2), cholecalciferol(vitamin D3), and calcidiol monohydrate. Systematic reviews of the literature were conducted to assess the relative bioavailability of calcidiol monohydrate versus vitamin D3on serum 25(OH)D concentrations, and for priority adverse health effects of excess vitamin D intake, namely persistent hypercalcaemia/hypercalciuria and endpoints related to musculoskeletal health (i.e. falls, bone fractures, bone mass/density and indices thereof). Based on the available evidence, the Panel proposes a CF for calcidiol monohydrates of 2.5 for labelling purposes. Persistent hypercalciuria, which may be an earlier sign of excess vitamin D than persistent hypercalcaemia, is selected as the critical endpoint on which to base the UL for vitamin D. A lowest-observed-adverse-effect-level (LOAEL) of250μg/day is identified from two randomised controlled trials in humans, to which an uncertainty factor of 2.5 is applied to account for the absence of a no-observed-adverse-effect-level (NOAEL). AUL of 100μg vitamin D equivalents (VDE)/day is established for adults (including pregnant and lactating women) and for adolescents aged 11–17 years, as there is no reason to believe that adolescents in the phase of rapid bone formation and growth have a lower tolerance for vitamin D compared to adults. For children aged 1–10 years, a UL of 50μg VDE/day is established by considering their smaller body size. Based on available intake data, European populations are unlikely to exceed the UL, except for regular users of food supplements containing high doses of vitamin D
Original languageEnglish
Article numbere08145
Pages (from-to)1-219
Number of pages219
JournalEFSA Journal
Issue number8
Early online date8 Aug 2023
Publication statusPublished online - 8 Aug 2023

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2023 European Food Safety Authority. EFSA Journal published by Wiley-VCH GmbH on behalf of European Food Safety Authority.


  • vitamin D
  • upper intake level
  • adverse effects
  • health
  • tolerable upper intake level
  • Ergocalciferol
  • cholecalciferol
  • calcidiol monohydrate
  • conversion factor


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