Skip to content

Should You Supplement Vitamin D?

Vitamin D plays a crucial role in vital processes in your body. You need adequate levels of Vitamin D for healthy bones, immune response, and effective brain and nerve function. With all of these systems in mind you might ask yourself, “Should I supplement Vitamin D?”

The Importance of Vitamin D

Vitamin is unique among vitamins because it functions more like a hormone, a messenger when it converts to calcitriol in your body. Vitamin D3 is supplemented if your blood levels are not therapeutic. I do not advise blindly supplementing Vitamin D3 without knowing your level because your personal medical history and conditions determine dosing needs.

Basic Information

Vitamin D supports your bone structure, brain function and immune system. You get this through adequate sun exposure and supplementation. It keeps your bones healthy by regulating calcium movement in and out of your bones. Your immune response is vital when you come in contact with a virus, bacteria or tissue injury. Your mental health and brain needs vitamin D to provide healthy nerve signaling and neurotransmitter levels. That’s a lot of activity! Your skin is created to absorb ultraviolet B rays from the sun and synthesize vitamin D within your body. In your liver, the precursor form of vitamin D, called cholecalciferol (or vitamin D3) is created. You might say “I am sure I get enough vitamin D, I am outside every day!” However, if you are carrying extra fat, wearing sunscreen or it is during the winter months in the northern hemisphere… especially right here in southern MN…you have reduced opportunity for sun exposure which leads to lower vitamin D production. What if you are not effectively producing adequate levels of your vitamin D? You must supplement it! You can receive vitamin D from certain foods like fatty fish, eggs, and fortified dairy products or a quality D3 tablet, capsule or liquid supplement.

When you don’t have enough Vitamin D

Because Vitamin D is foundational for multiple processes in your body, insufficient levels can lead to several serious conditions. Your bones can become weakened, you may have decreased ability to create an immune response and feel sick. You may develop an autoimmune illness due to confused immune signaling as your body considers you to be the invader and attacks your own tissues. Vitamin D receptors are present in the brain, and vitamin D is involved in the synthesis of neurotransmitters like serotonin, which plays a role in mood regulation. You might have inefficient brain signaling that is reflected in your mood such as anxiety and depression. Studies suggest that these symptoms are due to the link between vitamin D and neurotransmitter action in the brain. It’s important to note that while there is evidence supporting the association between low vitamin D levels and mood disorders, the relationship is complex, and other factors such as genetics, lifestyle, and overall health also play a role. Anyone concerned about their vitamin D levels or experiencing mood-related issues should have proper evaluation and guidance by a medical professional.

What if I take too much vitamin D?

It is essential to maintain a healthy level of Vitamin D. Excessive vitamin D intake can also have adverse effects. Because Vitamin D helps regulate calcium in your bones and blood, you need to be careful in dosing because it can cause a buildup of calcium in your blood (known as hypercalcemia). High calcium in your blood can cause nausea and vomiting, weakness, and frequent urination. Vitamin D toxicity can progress to bone pain and kidney problems, such as the formation of calcium stones.

How I can help

How do you know if you have adequate levels of Vitamin D for your wellbeing? My recommendation is to run the 25-hydroxyvitamin D blood test with a reliable lab. I trust Quest Labs for their high quality standards here in my office. Once you’ve tested you will need to compare your Vitamin D levels. Normal levels typically range between 30 and 50 (ng/mL), although optimal levels may vary. I often advise individuals with insufficient or deficient vitamin D levels to take supplements. I trust Ortho Molecular or Designs For HealthVitamin D3 in my office with excellent clinical response. In addition, I recommend clients with mood concerns to reach levels of at least 50-60 ng/ml. This is especially important for individuals who spend extended periods indoors or have limited sun exposure and are at higher weight. I invite you to my office where we would discuss the blood draw process and personalized evaluation.

Know Your Vitamin D Levels

Vitamin D is proven to have a critical role in your overall health. I routinely test my clients to ensure they are meeting their personal needs based on medical needs and history. It’s very important to stress that while there is evidence supporting the association between low vitamin D levels and mood disorders, the relationship is complex, and other factors mentioned above also impact this decision. If you are concerned about your Vitamin D levels, I encourage you to call me. If you are experiencing mood symptoms, recurrent illness, or desire a look at your overall health starting with a Vitamin D level testing is important. Here at Begin With Dawn I work to provide personal consultations in my office for holistic evaluation and guidance for your specific needs.

References

https://www.fda.gov/consumers/consumer-updates/fda-101-dietary-supplements https://ods.od.nih.gov/factsheets/VitaminD-HealthProfessional/ https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/23609390/ https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC6970300/#ref22 https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/30154381/ https://ajcn.nutrition.org/

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *