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Can dark skin lead to Vitamin D deficiency?


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Yes, people with darker skin are at a higher risk of Vitamin D deficiency because the pigment (melanin) in darker skin does not absorb as much ultraviolet (UV) radiation as compared to people with lighter skin colour.

Vitamin D3 is made by the skin when it is exposed to direct sunlight by the reaction of 7-dehydrocholesterol with UVB radiation, present in sunlight. Darker skin has a protective affect against the exposure of ultraviolet (UV) radiation, but it also inhibits the synthesis of Vitamin D. Those with darker skin colour must spend more time exposed to the sunlight to make the same amount of Vitamin D as compared to the ones with lighter skin tones.