Sunday, March 4, 2012

Vitamin D

Have you had your level tested?
I was only tested for the first time about 6 months ago because I read that a deficiency could cause infertility.  My level was only 24 which is deficient. I was shocked bc that was during the summer when I was going outside. I started taking 2,000 units a day and got retested 3 months later. My level went up 10 points. At this point, the lab said it was normal. The Vitamin D council says it is still deficient so I added another 1,000. I am now up to 3,000 a day. I got retested 3 months later and it is now 46.  I have been learning so much about Vitamin D and how it is so important to your overall health. I  signed up to get the Vitamin D council's newsletter. I also decided it was time to give vitamin D its own page. 

The Vitamin D Council

The Vitamin D Council is a nonprofit, tax-exempt 501(c)(3) educational corporation in the State of California, founded in 2003 by Executive Director John J. Cannell, M.D., on the conviction that humans all over the world are needlessly suffering from vitamin D deficiency. Their mission is to end the worldwide vitamin D deficiency epidemic by means of outreach and awareness, treatment, research and activism.
 The Vitamin D Council produces summaries on a wide range of health conditions. 
Vitamin D and infertility 
Vitamin D and pregnancy
World's Healthiest Foods Vitamin D Information

The following info below comes from Dr.  Donald Miller who is a cardiac surgeon and Professor of Surgery at the University of Washington in Seattle. He is a member of Doctors for Disaster Preparedness

Vitamin D regulates the expression of more than 1,000 genes throughout the body.  Vitamin D switches on genes in macrophages that make antimicrobial peptides, antibiotics the body produces.

Vitamin D also expresses genes that stop macrophages from overreacting to an infection and releasing too many inflammatory agents — cytokines — that can damage infected tissue. Vitamin D, for example, down regulates genes that produce interleukin-2 and interferon gamma, two cytokines that prime macrophages and cytotoxic T cells to attack the body's tissues.

A growing body of evidence indicates that rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults  are just the tip of a vitamin D-deficiency iceberg. Tuberculosis and various autoimmune diseases, such as multiple sclerosis, lupus, and type I diabetes have a causal association with low vitamin D blood levels. Vitamin D deficiency plays a causal role in hypertension, coronary artery disease, congestive heart failure, peripheral vascular disease, and stroke. It is also a risk factor for metabolic syndrome and type II diabetes, chronic fatigue, seasonal affective disorder, depression, cataracts, infertility, and osteoporosis. 

Experts reckon that an optimum blood level of vitamin D  is 50—99 ng/ml. (Children need a blood level >8 ng/ml to prevent rickets. It takes a concentration >20 to maintain parathyroid hormone levels in a normal range. A level >34 is needed for peak intestinal calcium absorption. And in elderly people neuromuscular performance steadily improves as vitamin D blood levels rise to 50 ng/ml.) 

The government's recommended daily allowance (RDA) for vitamin D is 400 IU (international units) a day, an amount sufficient to prevent rickets and osteomalacia but not vitamin D's other gene-regulating benefits. To achieve all of vitamin D's benefits one has to take an amount ten times the government's RDA — 4,000 to 5,000 IU a day.  

Food contains very little vitamin D. Federal regulations now require that some foods, like milk, be fortified with vitamin D. But one would have to drink 200 glasses of milk to obtain the amount of vitamin D a light-skinned person can make in 20 minutes sunbathing. 

The majority of Americans are vitamin D deficient, with a  blood level <20 ng/ml,  Vitamin D supplements (D3, ) provide the only way most of us can maintain a year-round vitamin D blood levels greater than 50 ng/ml. That requires taking 4—5,000 IU of vitamin D a day 


  1. My Napro Dr. tested my Vit. D and the first time it was in the 20s like you. He put me on 4,000 iu a day and it went up some. I ended up at 6,000 iu a day before my level got up into the 50s or 60s where he was happy with it. I'm still on the 4,000 a day, however, to keep my Vit. D at that level. I think I have my specific levels on my blog (fertility timeline), or I can look them up if you're curious. It's definitely something to look into more!!

  2. I've had my levels tested at the urging of my practitioner and I've upped my dose quite a bit. Thank you for reminding me to take my vitamin D!

  3. I take 4,000 units daily. Last time it was tested, it was 72.
    Good post - more people need to be aware of how important this vitamin is.

  4. First time I was tested six months ago I was at 18. Just tested this past week and I am up to 35.. Taking 2000 units a day..

  5. Thanks for the comments. I read that 1,000 will raise it 10 points. THat is why I am going with the slow and steady increase with my vitamins. I'm going to get retested tomorrow. By my estimate I hope to be about 45. We'll see bc it is the winter.


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