What Does Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) Really Mean?

What does Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) really mean? Are these suggested intakes sufficient to optimise health outcomes?
 
According to the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC), RDI refers to "the average daily dietary intake level that is sufficient to meet the nutrient requirements of nearly all (97–98 per cent) healthy individuals in a particular life stage and gender group". This definition can be confusing. In actual fact, the RDI refers to the minimum level of intake required for adequate physiologic or metabolic function and avoidance of deficiency states that cause diseases such as scurvy (vitamin C deficiency), pellagra (vitamin B3 deficiency) and rickets (vitamin D deficiency). However, the RDI for some nutrients may differ substantially from the level of nutrient intake considered optimal to prevent chronic disease and illness and for people who suffer from chronic diseases or conditions that reduce gastrointestinal absorption.
 
In fact a growing body of evidence suggests that nutrient intakes of vitamin D, Vitamin C and Zinc in excess of the RDI may be beneficial for prevention of upper respiratory tract infection such as common cold and flu in the general population, as well as prevention of respiratory infections such as pneumonia in certain patient groups. For more information on the evidence behind these nutraceuticals, head to our science page at imunihealth.com (link here: imunihealth.com/pages/ingredients
 
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What does Recommended Dietary Intake (RDI) really mean?

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