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Cod Liver Oil

Oral Answers to Questions — Ministry of Health – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 16th December 1957.

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Photo of Sir Barnett Stross Sir Barnett Stross , Stoke-on-Trent Central 12:00 am, 16th December 1957

asked the Minister of Health what is the quantity of cod liver oil which must be taken by an infant or young child in order to supply a daily dose of 50,000 units of vitamin D.

Photo of Mr Richard Thompson Mr Richard Thompson , Croydon South

About a bottle-and-a-half of the cod liver oil at present provided through the Welfare Foods Service.

Photo of Sir Barnett Stross Sir Barnett Stross , Stoke-on-Trent Central

I am not sure whether I heard the Parliamentary Secretary correctly and he said "a bottle-and-a-half." Is he aware that in some newspapers there have been occasional attacks on the use of cod liver oil, and the suggestion made that children may become seriously ill after taking an overdose? Does he not agree that to receive an overdose one would have to consume a vast amount of it over a prolonged period, and that such a risk literally does not exist in this case? Will he make clear that that is the view of his Department?

Photo of Mr Richard Thompson Mr Richard Thompson , Croydon South

A dose of one teaspoonful daily, which is recommended for children of six months and over supplies about 800 units of Vitamin D. The new type of oil with a lower vitamin content, which is advised by the Cohen Committee, and which will be supplied next month, will provide 400 units, the reduced daily intake recommended by the Medical Research Council Conference on Hypercalcaemia as adequate and sufficient to protect against rickets.