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Scottish people are suffering from a lack of sun, a new report says. They are famously unhealthy, with one of the highest premature mortality rates in Europe, but it’s not just because Scotland has extreme areas of poverty, says the Times. The new study suggests that the country’s relatively sunless and rainy climate is a crucial factor. The study published last week finds a link between a lack of vitamin D, which is generated by sunshine, and Scotland’s unusually high incidence of diseases like multiple sclerosis (MS), diabetes, arthritis and some cancers. For instance, Orkney and Shetland get just 24% of the maximum possible sunshine hours, and have the highest prevalence of MS in the world. Vitamin D deficiency is twice as common among the Scots as among the English, while the average Scot has a vitamin D level four times lower than their neighbours south of the border. To compensate for the lack of sunshine, Dr Oliver Gillie, who conducted the 5 year research programme is urging the Scottish executive to launch a programme to encourage every resident to take a daily supplement of vitamin D.