How Do I Read a Food Label for Vitamin D Content?

The vitamin D content of a food is found on the Nutrition Facts Panel on the food label and expressed as the % Daily Value. The Daily Value (DV) should not be confused with recommended intakes. Adults under 50 years of age should consume 400-800 international units (IU) or 10-20 micrograms (mcg) of vitamin D daily. Adults 50 years of age and above should consume 800-1000 IU or 20-25mcg daily. Your healthcare provider may recommend more vitamin D than above stated amounts based on your individual needs.

Even though the Daily Value should not be considered the current recommended intake for vitamin D, you can use the %DV for vitamin D listed on the food label  to find out the vitamin D content (IU) per serving of food.

Knowing how to read food labels will help you find foods with vitamin D. The label does not always list the vitamin D content. It is most often listed when vitamin D is added.

When vitamin D is listed on a food label, it is as easy as 1, 2, 3 to find the vitamin D content (IU per serving):

1.  Find the vitamin D% (listed as %DV per serving)

2.  Drop the %

3.  Multiply x 4 = IU per serving

Following the simple steps above, you can easily find the IU of vitamin D in a serving of milk

1. Vitamin D% = 25% per 1 cup serving

2. Drop the % = 25

3. 25 x 4 = 100 IU per 1 cup serving

Sample Food Label