Vitamin D – The Sunshine Supplement
By Margaret Plouff – Contributor, Natural Wellness
Recently, new research has revealed the importance of the “Sunshine Supplement.” According to the Vitamin D Council,
“Vitamin D deficiency is a world-wide epidemic, with recent estimates indicating greater than 50% of the global population is at risk.”
Vitamin D is necessary for:
- Retaining bone density
- Maintaining body’s immunity against heart disease, cancer
- Preventing muscle wasting and osteoporosis
- Aiding the body’s absorption of calcium
- Relieving depression
An ideal way to get vitamin D is having twenty minutes of sun exposure on your face, chest, back and arms. Sounds nice this time of year in the northern hemisphere!! You can get your week of sunshine on winter break, but what do we do the rest of winter?
Start by seeing where your vitamin D levels are today. Ask your doctor for a 25-hydroxyvitamin D or 25 (OH) D test or simply “the vitamin D test.” This will show where your vitamin D levels are at. Many of us are in the range of 20-30 which is too low. Ultimately we need to be in a range of 50-80 ng/mL. Children are also showing vitamin D deficiencies in their blood test, and need supplementation as well.
Your doctor can recommend what dosage is correct for you. In general, women are taking 1ooo to 2000 IU per day for maintenance. If you are deficient, the doctor may recommend taking 5-10,000 IU per day. It’s imperative to take D3, not D2. Supplementing with D3, (cholecalciferol) from sheep lanolin or cod liver oil is the best. D2 is synthetic, and as with any synthetic or isolated supplement, the body does not absorb it properly. D3 comes in a serum or tablet.
Have your D levels tested again in 6-8 weeks to provide your D level, and you can change your dose as necessary to be in healthy range (50-80 ng/mL).
When your Vitamin D levels are in an adequate range, (50-80 ng/mL) your body can reap these benefits. Who knew that vitamin D is the queen of vitamins and provided us with so many wonderful benefits?!
Check out the Vitamin D Council's website for more details about vitamin D.
Questions? Email me at Margaret [at] FocusedWisdom.com for more health inspiration and ideas!