Reversing Vitamin D Deficiency

Vitamin D Deficiency (A Reader’s Experience)

By: Elena W. (Vitamin D3 Blog Reader)

Editor’s Note: The following story was submitted to the Vitamin D3 Blog as a comment. Due to its length and the dramatic nature of the claims made herein, the editorial decision was made to publish the comment as a standalone post/article. The Vitamin D3 Blog cannot vouch for the accuracy or legitimacy of the claims contained within this reader’s account of her experience with vitamin D deficiency. The following is her story, and does not reflect the views, opinions or beliefs of the Vitamin D3 Blog, its writers or editorial staff.

Liquid Vitamin D3 Supplements, Sunbathing Ended Years of Suffering

I developed severe unbearable pain in the back of my neck in June 2009. It took six months to receive a diagnosis, and after that I had to go through six months of medications that did not work. My condition got progressively worse.

In May of 2010 I underwent fundoplication surgery for Larynpharengeal Reflux. Over the next five months worsened even more.

Even though the PH studies showed the surgery reduced the reflux into the throat from 40 to 0.4. While that was quite an improvement in terms of PH, however my overall condition continued to worsen to the point that I began to lose approximately two pounds each day simply because I couldn’t swallow water.

After being sent to a mental health clinic in the region where I retired, my new doctors assumed my condition was stressed induced, and likely all in my head. It was at that point that I began to take over my own treatment regimen.Probiotic Supplements (Medical Grade)

I observed major improvement with medical-grade doses of probiotics. However, there was no other improvement to speak of. Still, that result was nonetheless better than what modern medicine was able to achieve.

In April of 2011, still burning severely in my whole throat/neck/head area, I developed two additional health problems: a progressively worsening incontinence and severe shoulder pain, respectively. The shoulder pain was severe and I was unable to even lift my arms.

In Aug 2011 I went to the head regional gastroenterologist to request that I be sent to an outside medical system for a second opinion and that the HMO pay for it. The head GI said three things to me, “We don’t know what you have but it’s not LPR; we are not going to pay for an outside opinion; and you have to learn to live with the pain.”

By now, I didn’t even bother to share with my doctors that I had developed incontinence and severe shoulder pain. I basically knew intuitively that my doctors were incompetent and failed to think outside of the box. All they were able to do was to go through their routine medical periodicals.

Fortunately for me, I never stopped researching my illness, and slowly pieced together that my illnesses was due to weak esophageal muscles. It was sort of like atrophy, because the fundoplication should have significantly helped me and it didn’t. I came home from that August 2011 meeting with the head regional GI doctor and wept. I knew I was doomed to a slow death, and my ability to cope with acid burn on the sensitive throat nerves was reaching a point of causing me to lose my ability to cope with the constant pain. I was sleeping no more than 5 minutes at a time at night, and I paced all day to walk off the nerve/throat pain.

However, my luck was about to change for the better. I had a moment of clarity and sat down at the computer and did a web search for “what strengthens muscles”, and up popped different articles, several  of which mentioned Vitamin D3.

Sunbathing as a Vitamin D3 Source

I sat up. I saw that athletes use it for muscle strength. When I read that it hit me — I had avoided the sun for 40 years! I was a textbook example of what can happen in cases of severe vitamin D deficiency.

I had mistakenly believed all the articles I had read stating that the sun was bad for the skin. I immediately sent a email to my primary care physician and without saying why, told her I wanted a vitamin D test (a Liquid Vitamin D3 Supplementsblood test to determine vitamin D levels relative to what is defined as “normal” ranges) as well as a vitamin B12 test.

I studied the types of vitamin D, and learned that D3 was definitely the best form to take as a supplement. I immediately ordered some 10,000 IU liquid vitamin D3 supplements.

I received my D3 drops three days later and within 24-48 hours the deep pain in my shoulder blades had vanished and the bladder incontinence disappeared. Even the LPR slowly began to lift.

It’s been 2.5 years and I continue to improve with LPR. I now travel during vacation down the latitude of the planet toward the equator for sunshine. I live at the 38th latitude on the planet and have researched that the sun is best at 1 pm (due to daylight savings time) from mid-April to mid-September, and I get about 10-13 minutes of direct sunshine every day that I can.

My health has improved in ways I can not explain. However, these are very real, albeit somewhat subtle. For example, I’ve had severe weakness of the legs since I was 40 years old. I’m 62 right now and my legs climb stairs with no problem.

I feel so strong now that I finally have energy! I don’t drag through the day, and my sleeping patterns have seen a world of improvement. I used to frequently fall ill with a variety of ailments. Now I rarely get sick. My skin has improved, and in spite of everything mentioned herein, I can’t help but think I’m omitting something.

Man Sunbathing for Vitamin D3

Vitamin D3 supplements have worked wonders for my health. While I cannot scientifically prove that the D3 is the sole reason for my dramatic improvement in terms of my overall health, I know without one iota of doubt that were it not for the vitamin D, there’s a good chance I wouldn’t even be alive today, much less in the best health I can recall being in for the vast majority of my adult life.

Elena W.

The Vitamin D3 Blog would like to thank Elena for contributing her experience with Vitamin D Deficiency!

Note: Images do not necessarily depict those of the reader or the brand of supplements she takes.

Schizophrenia Linked to Vitamin D Insufficiency

Schizophrenia Linked to Vitamin D Insufficiency

By: Pamela Egan

A new study out of Iran has determined that individuals suffering from inadequate serum levels of vitamin D have more than double the chances of becoming schizophrenic than do people who obtain healthy amounts of the letter vitamin/hormone.

Low Vitamin D Serum Levels Doubles Chances of Becoming Schizophrenic

Vitamin D-3 Drops (Supplement)Unlike a traditional study, the research published July 22 in the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism constitutes what is known as a “meta analysis”. In a meta analysis, unlike a traditional experiment, study or clinical trial, instead of conducting original research using volunteers (test subjects), a control group and different variables to determine how the different variables react (or don’t react) to the volunteers under various circumstances; the researchers instead review previously conducted research. The objective is to review numerous studies which are similar in nature in an attempt to discern any patterns or other data that may surface in the presence of macro-data that may not be as obvious within the context of a single study.

In this particular instance, the researchers reviewed 19 different studies encompassing a combined total of over 2,800 people studied. The purpose of the research was to determine if any discernible link could be established between vitamin D deficiency and schizophrenia.

The scientists were surprised to discover that not only does vitamin D deficiency predispose an individual to developing schizophrenia, a grouping of psychiatric disorders characterized by among other things hallucinations, difficulty speaking, delusions and disoriented thoughts, but did so by a substantial margin. As it turns out, those who suffer from insufficient levels of vitamin D (which is actually a hormone – not a vitamin), a condition known as “vitamin D deficiency” or “vitamin D deficiency syndrome”, are more than two times as likely to become schizophrenic than are people who maintain normal/healthy levels of the hormone/nutrient. The exact figure is 2.16 times more likely for those whose levels are inadequate relative to those whose are.

While co-author Dr. Ahmad Esmaillzadeh expressed hope that his team’s findings “might help psychiatrists in the healing process of patients with schizophrenia,” he cautioned against jumping to any conclusions with regard to the role (if any) vitamin D supplements will play in the prevention and treatment of this mentally trying condition.

“Controlled clinical trials are needed to confirm the effects of vitamin D supplementation,” Esmaillzadeh added.

Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Schizophrenia – Video

Vitamin D3 Benefits: Autism and ADHD

Can Vitamin D3 Help Reduce the Rates of Autism, ADHD?

By: Pamela Egan, NP, ABAAHP, CDE

In addition to research that indicates that Vitamin D3 can help drastically reduce your risk of Seasonal Flu and Swine Flu, the super-vitamin also appears to have a role in combating Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) as well as Autism.

Vitamin D Autism

More than 4.4 million children have been diagnosed with ADHD. Health officials believe the incidence of autism is 1 in 150. The incidence among boys is even higher: 1 in 94.  Vitamin D’s role in the development of the brain begins when the human brain undergoes its most rapid and complex formation between the last trimester of pregnancy and the first two years of life.  Some of the new literature on vitamin D3 suggests that it may be that a maternal vitamin D3 deficiency sets the stage for autism. When combined with the right genetic propensity, which is linked to a high risk of autoimmune disorders, activating an immune reaction in the brain may trigger the effects on brain development associated with autism.

In this way, daily ingestion of a high-quality vitamin d3 supplement by pregnant mothers may help reduce the rates of ADHD and Autism in future generations.

Pamela Egan, NP, ABAAHP Diplomat (American Board of Anti-Aging Health Practitioners), CDE is a board certified Adult & Family Nurse Practitioner, Fellow of the American Academy of Anti-Aging & Functional Medicine, and Certified Diabetes Educator. She is a  health columnist from Covington, LA. Her website is www.pamelaegan.com.

Nurse Practitioner Egan has written extensively about the topic of vitamin d3. Links to some of her articles about the subject have been included below.

Pam’s Vitamin D3 Articles:

  • Vitamin D3 Sources – Article about the various sources through which one can obtain vitamin d3. These include sunlight, egg yolks and cold liver oil.
  • Vitamin D3: The Miracle of Sunshine – Comprehensive article covers virtually all angles of discussion regarding the topic of vitamin d3. The article touches upon the differences between vitamins d2 and d3, the role of sunlight in the creation of d3, d3 deficiency and the many, many health benefits associated with consistently healthy levels of the nutrient being present in an individual.
  • Vitamin D3: Are You Getting Enough? – Article covering the basics of vitamin d3, emphasizing the importance of the nutrient and warning against the dangers of being d3 deficient. The article recommends sunbathing, in the nude if possible, as a means of countering d3 deficiency.
  • Experts Call for Increased Dosage of Vitamin D3 – Article discussing vitamin d3 dosage, and research that suggests that additional health benefits may be obtained by increasing the amount of intake.
  • Vitamin D3 May Help Lower Blood Pressure and Cholesterol – Article discussing scientific research that seemingly establishes a relationship between vitamin d3, blood pressure and cholesterol. The study found that as vitamin d levels decreased, blood pressure and cholesterol tended to rise, and vice versa.

Vitamin D as a Flu Shot Alternative

Vitamin D3: An Alternative to Flu Vaccine?

Could flu prevention be as simple as ensuring one has adequate levels of vitamin D? At least one doctor thinks so.

Flu Shot

At the bottom of this article is a short video of Dr. John Cannell, MD, discussing the health benefits of vitamin d, particularly as it pertains to the effects of vitamin d on the immune system.

The doctor begins be stating that anyone who takes 5,000 iu of vitamin d3 every can attest to the immune benefits offered by the nutrient by confirming that they no longer get sick.

He claims that “any infection disease” be it bacterial, viral or even fungal, that is more common in the wintertime, is “a target” of vitamin d. He claims that vitamin d has a tremendous effect in preventing the common cold and flu, a result of the nutrient’s anti-bacterial and anti-microbial properties.

The doctor elaborates on the subject of vitamin d deficiency, comparing the rates of infection for various diseases in the normal population versus in those that are vitamin d deficient, citing that rates of infection are several times higher in those that are deficient.

Also discussed is the effect of vitamin d as an anti-inflammatory agent, helping to reduce inflammation and in the process, strengthen the immune system. This may be part of the reason vitamin d3 may help lower blood pressure and cholesterol, and is widely believed to help protect against heart disease.

The doctor goes much farther into detail in the video than I can document in this post. He spends a significant amount of time discussing the relationship between vitamin d deficiency and influenza, including avian flu, the common influenza, as well as H1N1 flu.

Finally, the opinions expressed in the video are those of the doctor depicted in the video, and do not necessarily reflect those of this blog, its author, or any partner sites.

Disclaimer: Neither this blog or its author are advocating either for or against anyone receiving a flu shot. That decision is between an individual and his or her doctor.

Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Myriad Diseases

Vitamin D Deficiency Linked to Myriad Diseases

UPDATE: The list of diseases, illnesses and various other health maladies that have been scientifically linked to Vitamin D Deficiency now stands at 32. The updated version of the list is posted at the bottom of the article.

If you’ve been following the news at all for the past year, you’ve probably read that Vitamin D — Vitamin D3 specifically — helps boost the immune system.  You’ve probably also read that increasing volumes of research seem to indicate a relationship between Vitamin D Deficiency and various diseases.  What you may not have known is just how many different diseases and conditions are now being linked scientifically to deficient levels of this vital nutrient.

Vitamin D Deficiency

Before I go any further, I’d like to clarify the difference between Vita
min D3
and regular Vitamin D. Vitamin D3 (Cholecalciferol) is the form of the vitamin manufactured within the human body from sunlight. It is the most active and bioavailable form of the nutrient, which translated to better absorption within the body. The alternative form of the vitamin is known as D2, or Ergocalciferol.

Over the past several years, the general consensus of experts has been rapidly shifting in the direction of declaring Vitamin D2 a nutrient unfit for supplement form. This is due in part to health experts such as Nurse Practitioner and Health Columnist Pam Egan, who dared to challenge the conventional wisdom regarding Vitamin D at a time when the term “Vitamin D3″ was largely unheard of. Mrs. Egan has been distinguishing between the two forms of the vitamin in her published writings for most of the past decade, including a couple of years at the beginning when her peers wrote off her claims as speculative.

While scanning news headlines recently, I was simply awed by the sheer number of stories about the establishment of scientific links between Vitamin D3 Deficiency and disease. In light of this experience, I have assembled a partial list of the seemingly endless diseases and conditions for which the nutritional shortcoming is a contributing factor.

In no particular order, the following is a partial list of some of the diseases and conditions caused in part by Vitamin D Deficiency.


Diseases and Conditions Linked to Vitamin D3 Deficiency:

1. Parkinson’s Disease – Two new studies suggest that older people who are deficient in Vitamin D may be more likely to develop the neurological disorder.  The first study was directed by Paul Knekt of the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare.  David Llewellyn of Italy’s Exeter University spearheaded the second study, which was published in the Archives of Internal Medicine. Source

2. Asthma – A new study conducted by the Harvard Medical School in Boston found that children low in Vitamin D3 were more likely to suffer an asthma attack requiring hospitalization than were children with healthy levels of the vitamin. Source

3. Chronic Pain – Two studies – one by Dr. Greg Plotnikoff, the other by the Mayo Clinic – appear to show a link between Vitamin D Deficiency and chronic pain. Source

4. Childhood Obesity – A study published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition suggests that Vitamin D deficient children are likely to have a higher Body Mass Index (BMI) than their better-nourished schoolmates. Source

5. Osteoporosis in Patients with IBD – A study by the American College of Gastroenterology indicates that Vitamin D deficient patients with IBD (Irritable Bowel Disease) are at a greater risk of developing osteoporosis, osteopenia and an overall higher rate of abnormal bone density. Source

6. Autoimmune Disorders – A study published in Genome Research indicates that people with insufficient Vitamin D are more susceptible to autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis, type 1 diabetes, and Crohn’s disease. Source

7. Arterial Stiffness – The Endocrine Society published a study this past summer linking Vitamin D Deficiency to arterial stiffness in black teens. Source

8. Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome – Researchers from Johns Hopkins University presented a study at the Endocrine Society’s annual meeting establishing a link between Vitamin D Deficiency and Diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome, which is the medical precursor to diabetes. Source

9. Cancer, Heart Disease and More – The following study appearing in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition establishes the preventive benefits of Vitamin D3 with regard to various forms of cancer, heart disease and numerous others. Source

10. Rickets – This one has long-been established as fact by the medical and scientific communities, so I therefore feel no need to include specifics or cite sources.  The link has been firmly established and repeatedly confirmed.

11. Inflammation – A 2009 study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine confirmed a link between Vitamin D Deficiency in otherwise healthy women and increased inflammation. Source

12. Autism – There is an increasing body of evidence that Vitamin D Deficiency is a contributing factor to autism. Dr. John Cannell, a psychiatrist and prominent vitamin D advocate, says flagging levels of the vitamin in pregnant women and young children could be the elusive factor explaining the rising rate of autism. Source

13. ADHD – Recent studies from the past several years increasingly point to a relationship between low levels of Vitamin D3 and an aggravation/intensification of the symptoms of ADD and ADHD.

14. Influenza & Swine Flu – Research presented by John Cannell, MD of the Vitamin D Council showed that Vitamin D3 is protective against seasonal flu. Further research performed by Norris Glick, MD and Ellie Campbell, DO, showed that Vitamin D3 helps prevent H1N1 Flu. Further, Dr. John Cannell showed that Vitamin D3 deficiency activates the influenza virus (the Flu).

15. Fibromyalgia – A study published in the Journal of Pakistan Medical Association determined that Vitamin D3 deficiency is frequently seen in patients diagnosed with fibromyalgia and nonspecific musculoskeletal pain. Source

16. Hypertension & High Cholesterol – Evidence from numerous clinical and epidemiological studies have shown that increased dosages of Vitamin D3 can help lower blood pressure and cholesterol in patients deficient in the nutrient. Source

17. Depression – A scientific link between low Vitamin D3 levels and depression has been established following several recent studies confirming the relationship. According to one such study by scientists at Georgia State University: “The likelihood of having depression in persons with vitamin D deficiency is significantly higher compared to those with vitamin D sufficiency. Early diagnosis and intervention are paramount because coexistence of vitamin D deficiency and depression has serious negative consequences on health.” Source

18. Chronic Fatigue Syndrome – Vitamin D deficiency is closely associated with the chronic fatigue in patients with traumatic brain injury. Source

19. Tooth Decay – There is strong evidence indicating a relationship linking Vitamin D Deficiency to cavities and tooth decay. Dozens of studies were conducted in the 1930′s and 1940′s on this very subject. More than 90% of those studies concluded that supplementing children with vitamin D prevents cavities. Source

20. Lung Transplant Rejection – Vitamin D deficiency is associated with a significant increase in lung transplant rejection, according to research conducted at Loyola University Health System (LUHS). Source

Please keep in mind that this is only a partial list of the myriad of diseases and adverse conditions that are either caused in part by or aggravated by Vitamin D Deficiency, or that can largely be prevented with adequate sun exposure and/or supplemental intake.  Check back as I will be posting a follow-up article sometime in the near future listing even more diseases for which this nutritional shortage is a contributing factor.

Updated List of Diseases Linked to Vitamin D Deficiency:

  • Breast Cancer
  • Skin Cancer
  • Prostate Cancer
  • ADHD
  • Alzheimer’s
  • Autism
  • Multiple Sclerosis
  • Allergies
  • Parkinson’s Disease
  • Depression
  • AIDS
  • Fibromyalgia
  • Rickets
  • Influenza
  • H1N1 Flu
  • Various Autoimmune Disorders
  • Osteoporosis
  • Lung Transplant Rejection
  • Asthma
  • Childhood Obesity
  • Chronic Pain
  • Tooth Loss
  • Gingivitis
  • Type 2 Diabetes
  • Arterial Stiffness
  • Metabolic Syndrome
  • Heart Disease
  • High Blood Pressure (Hypertension)
  • Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
  • Lupus
  • Psoriatic Arthritis
  • Seasonal Affective Disorder

Vitamin D3 Supplements: When Are They Necessary?

Who Should Take Vitamin D Supplements, How Much and Why?

Vitamin D supplements, particularly those providing the more bio-available form known as Vitamin D3 or cholecalciferol, can be of life-saving importance to a larger percentage of the population than most would probably assume. Of all the vitamin and mineral supplements out on the market, Vitamin D3 supplements may be the most under-consumed and most important among them.

According to a number of recent studies, between 50-80% of the American population isn’t getting enough Vitamin D. This number is believed to be even higher among African Americans. Part of the problem is that a disturbingly high number of people either aren’t aware of the importance of healthy levels of the nutrient or make the mistake of assuming they get enough by way of diet and/or sunlight.

Remedial Information about Vitamin D is Misleading

Vitamin D3 Supplements

While most of us learned in school about the ever-important D vitamin is technically true (that Vitamin D is obtained via sunlight naturally), it is woefully incomplete information that has contributed to the crisis many health experts describe as a Vitamin D deficiency epidemic. We get Vitamin D from the sunshine. It is a “nonessential” vitamin (although that term is very misleading). What this effectively means is that our bodies can make it. Specifically, human skin manufactures it from sunshine, the liver breaks it down, and finally the kidney activates it into a form that is thousands of times more potent. This job provided by the kidney is lost very in the early stages of chronic kidney disease, and diminishes substantially often simply as a result of the aging process. What’s more, older people’s skin is not able to optimally manufacture the nutrient from sunlight.

So what does this all mean to the average American who likely had never so much as considered whether or not he or she was obtaining sufficient amounts of the nutrient?

Most of us also learned in school that inadequate Vitamin D levels can lead to rickets. But how many adults actually know someone with rickets? This is precisely the dilemma — rickets is not a disease people are used to seeing and thus, intricately familiar with.

Think You’re Getting Enough Vitamin D?  Think Again

Vitamin D3 Deficiency Sunlight

Far too many Americans are of the mistaken belief that they are getting enough sunshine, and what they’re not getting in terms of sun is compensated for by diet. This is a big mistake, at least if the studies indicating that more than half the American population is deficient are correct. Paying a (probably already overdue) visit to the doctor and having one’s Vitamin D levels checked takes very little time and is a relatively inexpensive test. This test is the only way to know for sure if one is low in the nutrient and thus susceptible to the assortment of health ailments and illnesses associated with the condition.

More Milk isn’t the Answer

Milk is fortified with Vitamin D, and many who are cognizant of the importance of the vitamin assume that drinking milk will help stave off deficiency. Technically this isn’t completely inaccurate. There’s just one problem with that line of thinking though: it would take approximately 16 glasses of milk a day to provide the necessary amount of Vitamin D needed to stave of deficiency and deficiency-related illness. What’s more, the Vitamin D found in milk breaks down when exposed to light? Most major grocery chains store milk under fluorescent lights 24-7 until it sells. Even if the milk is stored in such a way as to protect the nutrients inside it, sixteen glasses is a lot of milk — even if you like milk.

Rickets we rarely encounter, sunshine we have aplenty, and we’ve survived this long without nutrient-rich milk, so what does it matter? The human body requires Vitamin D for many internal processes. It is a co-factor in myriad activities within the body. Most of us did not learn this in school as scientists only recently discovered just how critically important this nutrient is.

Vitamin D Deficiency Epidemic

What you don’t know, can hurt you. Without enough Vitamin D, not only are we vulnerable to rickets, but more importantly processes begin in which the body essentially turns itself into bone. Genes get *up-regulated(1) in the absence of needed levels of Vitamin D, which lead to the building of bone matrix in soft tissue. That tissue includes blood vessels, the heart, liver, pancreas, the list goes on. Upon that matrix, minerals like calcium are laid down and turn it into bone. This obviously is not good for one’s health. As a matter of fact, this directly correlates with mortality rates — especially via heart disease.

Vitamin D3 DeficiencyThe lower the Vitamin D levels, the higher the mortality rate! Vitamin D deficiency has now been linked to colon cancer, diabetes, hypertension, fibromyalgia, proximal muscle weakness, and many, many others. While the death certificate doesn’t typically list Vitamin D deficiency as the cause-of-death, an alarmingly high number of debilitating and potentially even fatal diseases and illnesses have been associated with deficiencies in Vitamin D levels. So which came first, the chicken or the egg?

Vitamin D deficiency is indeed an epidemic. In numerous studies, 50-80% of the American populations studied are deficient in this Vitamin. These numbers are believed to be even higher among African Americans. While rickets is not regarded as a serious health concern, more and more people are diagnosed with heart disease, hypertension, and diabetes everyday in every family. Can anything help to prevent this?

More Sunlight Not Necessarily the Answer

The sun has gotten a bad rap. We know it causes aging of our skin and skin cancer. This is true, and in the case of skin cancer potentially deadly, so getting more sunlight is not necessarily the answer. Worth noting is the fact that the darker one’s skin, the less Vitamin D that person is able to manufacture all other things being equal. This likely explains why African Americans are suffering and dying more than any other group from these very same diseases now linked with Vitamin D deficiency.

When one spends considerable time in the sun, what happens? Assuming the person used sunblock, that person will become tan. The darker the skin the less Vitamin D one is able to manufacture, so more sun exposure is not the answer due to it’s catch-22 nature. This is especially true for African Americans and other people with dark skin.

vitamin D deficiency

Time in the sun is not a good predictor of one’s Vitamin D level for the reasons stated above. The only way to know if a person is deficient (and about 80% of us are) is to have that person’s Vitamin D levels tested and evaluated. Drinking milk is not going to bring the levels up unless perhaps one maybe owns a cow or has a very large refrigerator to go along with an insatiable appetite. The bottom line is that for most adults, Vitamin D3 supplements are usually necessary to ensure healthy levels and promote good health. According to esteemed Nurse Practitioner and Health Columnist Pamela Egan, “the few patients I see who are not deficient usually have been taking vitamin supplements for years.”

How Much Should I take?

The recommended dosages for Vitamin D are 400 units a day if you are under 50 years old, 600 units a day for those 51-70, and 800 units a day for those over 71. When one is deficient, it is very difficult to replete levels with over the counter doses of Vitamin D. A prescription-strength dose is often required, and can be beneficial with a weekly dose.

Nurse Practitioner Egan offered the following piece of advice for readers of this blog: “Talk to your doctor, get a level measured, and supplement your deficiency with enough D to maintain adequate levels. Let’s all live a long and happy life!”

High-Quality Vitamin D3 Supplements

* 1. Up-Regulation – the process where postsynaptic receptors increase in number or become more sensitive when presynaptic neurons are not releasing enough neurotransmitter to carry the impulse (mcgraw-hill.com).

* Alternate Definition of Up-Regulation – an increase in the number and density of a particular neuronal receptor, generally in response to an altered amount of neurotransmitters present in the surrounding environment (macalester.edu).

Pamela Egan, FNP-C, CDE, is a board-certified Nurse Practitioner, certified diabetes educator, health columnist and anti-aging diplomat. She is an expert on vitamin d3 and illnesses associated with deficiencies of this vital nutrient. Her website is www.pamelaegan.com.