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Thread: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

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    Default Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    November 30, 2010

    A new report, released today by the health arm of the National Academy of Sciences, says that few people are vitamin D deficient. The scientific research says otherwise.

    The new Institute of Medicine (IOM) report says that persons between the ages of 1 and 70 do not need more than 600 IU of vitamin D daily—and makes the outrageous claim that few people are actually vitamin D deficient. This is especially troubling considering we’re moving rapidly into the thick of flu season, when people need more vitamin D, not less.

    This is the government’s first official vitamin D recommendation since 1997. Despite raising the new vitamin levels by 300% for most Americans, the IOM guidelines are still in contrast to overwhelming scientific evidence that confirms the significant medical benefits of higher vitamin D levels, and that one-third of Americans are vitamin D deficient.

    Changes in US lifestyles mean that many people in the US get less exposure to the sun and often inadequate dietary levels of vitamin D. The New York Times reports that a number of prominent doctors have advised vitamin D supplementation for a wide variety of illnesses, including heart disease, cancer, and autoimmune diseases. Their research shows that more and more people know their vitamin D levels because they are being tested for it as part of routine physical exams.

    The IOM is wrong in its findings, wrong in ignoring the bountiful scientific research that indicates the need for higher levels of vitamin D in our system, and wrong for not educating folks about the ability of vitamin D to combat the flu. Our campaign to end the silence on vitamin D is one attempt to educate the public and get the government to listen to the clear scientific findings.

    http://www.anh-usa.org/institute-of-medicine-report-on-vitamin-d-is-wrong-wrong-wrong/

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    Reuters was quick to pick this up:

    North Americans get enough calcium, vitamin D
    By Maggie Fox, Health and Science Editor Tue Nov 30, 2010

    WASHINGTON (Reuters) - Most people in the United States and Canada get plenty of vitamin D and calcium, and may damage their health by taking too many supplements, experts advised on Tuesday.

    Contrary to popular wisdom, many Americans and Canadians get plenty of calcium and vitamin D and most do not need extra supplements to keep their bones strong, the Institute of Medicine committee said. "National surveys in both the United States and Canada indicate that most people receive enough calcium, with the exception of girls ages 9-18, who often do not take in enough calcium," the report reads. "In contrast, post-menopausal women taking supplements may be getting too much calcium, thereby increasing their risk for kidney stones."

    Many foods in North America are fortified with vitamin D and calcium, from milk to breakfast cereal and orange juice.
    The Nutrition Business Journal estimates that sales of calcium supplements rose 5 percent from 2008 to 2009, with sales of $1.2 billion, while the vitamin D supplement market grew by 82 percent in a year, to $430 million.

    The committee, led by nutritionist Catharine Ross of Pennsylvania State University, spent years examining medical evidence.
    Even assuming that people were getting little or no vitamin D from the sun, they found most North Americans got enough.
    "We are aware of reports and media attention to the idea that Americans and Canadians might have widespread Vitamin D deficiency," Ross told a news conference. "We found that, really, this widespread problem didn't seem to exist."
    Calcium is needed to build and keep bones strong and a few studies have linked low levels of vitamin D to a range of diseases, from cancer to multiple sclerosis. The report found there was not enough evidence to make firm conclusions about anything but bones, though.

    ROUTINE CARE
    "We have seen in the last couple of years a dramatic increase in assays of vitamin D in routine medical care. This is, to a great degree, unnecessary," said Dr. Steven Clinton, a cancer expert at Ohio State University. "It probably should not be a part of routine medical care."

    Ross said the team took a conservative approach in writing the report, available here
    Committee members noted that beta-carotene supplements in fact raised the risk of lung cancer in smokers, vitamin E and selenium showed mixed results and hormone replacement therapy, widely believed to reduce the risk of heart disease, raised the risk of stroke and breast cancer.

    North Americans need on average 400 International Units (IUs) of vitamin D per day, the committee decided. Those 71 and older may require as much as 800 IUs a day.

    The committee set these requirements for calcium:
    * Children aged 1 to 3 need 500 milligrams of calcium a day.
    * Children aged 4 to 8 need 800 milligrams daily.
    * Adolescents need more -- 1,300 milligrams a day.
    * Women aged 19 to 50 and men up to 71 require on average 800 milligrams daily.
    * Women over 50 and men over 71 need 1,000 mg.
    More than 4,000 IUs of vitamin D and 2,000 milligrams of calcium a day can damage kidneys and other tissue, the committee found.
    (Editing by Paul Simao)

    http://tinyurl.com/25ll7k7

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    I wanted to read the actual text of the report, but the Reuters link does not work. The closest I could come was this:

    http://www.iom.edu/Activities/Nutrit...tDCalcium.aspx

    Please notice who the sponsors are. Notice also who served on the committee or, more to the point, who did not: No mention of John Cannell or Michael Holick, the two possibly most recognized names in Vitamin D research. And it took the committee years to come up with this misinformation? I could have put it together in hours — accurately. So could you, based merely on the studies aggregated on this site.

    Sadly, I think of the damage being done as this news makes it into the mainstream media and believers begin covering up and slapping on the sunscreen again.

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    Veteran Member Katee's Avatar
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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    Well, "Institute of Medicine" means conventional medicine, of course.

    Think how much $$$ they will lose if folks learn to prevent most illnesses on their own! They have no vested interest in wanting to encourage folks to be well.

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    And here's John Cannell...

    Vitamin D Council Statement on FNB Vitamin D Report

    TODAY, THE FNB HAS FAILED MILLIONS...3:00 PM PST November 30, 2010

    After 13 year of silence, the quasi governmental agency, the Institute of Medicine's (IOM) Food and Nutrition Board (FNB), today recommended that a three-pound premature infant take virtually the same amount of vitamin D as a 300 pound pregnant woman. While that 400 IU/day dose is close to adequate for infants, 600 IU/day in pregnant women will do nothing to help the three childhood epidemics most closely associated with gestational and early childhood vitamin D deficiencies: asthma, auto-immune disorders, and, as recently reported in the largest pediatric journal in the world, autism. Professor Bruce Hollis of the Medical University of South Carolina has shown pregnant and lactating women need at least 5,000 IU/day, not 600.

    The FNB also reported that vitamin D toxicity might occur at an intake of 10,000 IU/day (250 micrograms/day), although they could produce no reproducible evidence that 10,000 IU/day has ever caused toxicity in humans and only one poorly conducted study indicating 20,000 IU/day may cause mild elevations in serum calcium, but not clinical toxicity.

    Viewed with different measure, this FNB report recommends that an infant should take 10 micrograms/day (400 IU) and a pregnant woman 15 micrograms/day (600 IU). As a single, 30 minute dose of summer sunshine gives adults more than 10,000 IU (250 micrograms), the FNB is apparently also warning that natural vitamin D input — as occurred from the sun before the widespread use of sunscreen — is dangerous. That is, the FNB is implying that God does not know what she is doing.

    Disturbingly, this FNB committee focused on bone health, just like they did 14 years ago. They ignored the thousands of studies from the last ten years that showed higher doses of vitamin D helps: heart health, brain health, breast health, prostate health, pancreatic health, muscle health, nerve health, eye health, immune health, colon health, liver health, mood health, skin health, and especially fetal health.

    Tens of millions of pregnant women and their breast-feeding infants are severely vitamin D deficient, resulting in a great increase in the medieval disease, rickets. The FNB report seems to reason that if so many pregnant women have low vitamin D blood levels then it must be OK because such low levels are so common. However, such circular logic simply represents the cave man existence (never exposed to the light of the sun) of most modern-day pregnant women.

    Hence, if you want to optimize your vitamin D levels — not just optimize the bone effect — supplementing is crucial. But it is almost impossible to significantly raise your vitamin D levels when supplementing at only 600 IU/day (15 micrograms).

    Pregnant women taking 400 IU/day have the same blood levels as pregnant women not taking vitamin D; that is, 400 IU is a meaninglessly small dose for pregnant women. Even taking 2,000 IU/day of vitamin D will only increase the vitamin D levels of most pregnant women by about 10 points, depending mainly on their weight. Professor Bruce Hollis has shown that 2,000 IU/day does not raise vitamin D to healthy or natural levels in either pregnant or lactating women. Therefore supplementing with higher amounts — like 5000 IU/day — is crucial for those women who want their fetus to enjoy optimal vitamin D levels, and the future health benefits that go along with it.

    For example, taking only two of the hundreds of recently published studies:P

    rofessor Urashima and colleagues in Japan, gave 1,200 IU/day of vitamin D3 for six months to Japanese 10-year-olds in a randomized controlled trial. They found vitamin D dramatically reduced the incidence of influenza A as well as the episodes of asthma attacks in the treated kids while the placebo group was not so fortunate. If Dr. Urashima had followed the newest FNB recommendations, it is unlikely that 400 IU/day treatment arm would have done much of anything and some of the treated young teenagers may have come to serious harm without the vitamin D.

    Likewise, a randomized controlled prevention trial of adults by Professor Joan Lappe and colleagues at Creighton University, which showed dramatic improvements in the health of internal organs, used more than twice the FNB's new adult recommendations.

    Finally, the FNB committee consulted with 14 vitamin D experts and — after reading these 14 different reports — the FNB decided to suppress their reports. Many of these 14 consultants are either famous vitamin D researchers, like Professor Robert Heaney at Creighton or, as in the case of Professor Walter Willett at Harvard, the single best-known nutritionist in the world. So, the FNB will not tell us what Professors Heaney and Willett thought of their new report? Why not?

    Today, the Vitamin D Council directed our attorney to file a federal Freedom of Information (FOI) request to the IOM's FNB for the release of these 14 reports.

    Most of my friends, hundreds of patients, and thousands of readers of the Vitamin D Council newsletter (not to mention myself), have been taking 5,000 IU/day for up to eight years. Not only have they reported no significant side-effects, indeed, they have reported greatly improved health in multiple organ systems.

    My advice, especially for pregnant women: continue taking 5,000 IU/day until your 25(OH)D is between 50–80 ng/mL (the vitamin D blood levels obtained by humans who live and work in the sun and the mid-point of the current reference ranges at all American laboratories).

    Gestational vitamin D deficiency is not only associated with rickets, but a significantly increased risk of neonatal pneumonia, a doubled risk for preeclampsia, a tripled risk for gestational diabetes, and a quadrupled risk for primary cesarean section.

    Today, the FNB has failed millions of pregnant women whose as yet unborn babies will pay the price. Let us hope the FNB will comply with the spirit of "transparency" by quickly responding to our Freedom of Information requests.

    John Jacob Cannell, MD
    Executive Director

    (1) Cannell JJ.. On the aetiology of autism. Acta Paediatr. 2010 Aug;99(8):1128-30. Epub 2010 May 19.
    (2)Karatekin G, Kaya A, Salihoglu O, Balci H, Nuhoglu A. Association of subclinical vitamin D deficiency in newborns with acute lower respiratory infection and their mothers. Eur J Clin Nutr. 2009;63(4):473-7.
    (3) Bodnar LM, Catov JM, Simhan HN, Holick MF, Powers RW, Roberts JM. Maternal vitamin D deficiency increases the risk of preeclampsia. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2007;92(9):3517-22.
    (4) Zhang C, Qiu C, Hu FB, David RM, van Dam RM, Bralley A, Williams MA. Maternal plasma 25-hydroxyvitamin D concentrations and the risk for gestational diabetes mellitus. PLoS One. 2008;3(11):e3753.
    (5) Merewood A, Mehta SD, Chen TC, Bauchner H, Holick MF. Association between vitamin D deficiency and primary cesarean section. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2009;94(3):940-5.

    http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/vdc-s...d-report.shtml
    Last edited by Islander; 12-01-10 at 11:57 AM.

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    Veteran Member Reesacat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    Dr. Cannell is spot on! To keep pushing these low almost negligable doses Vit D3 is criminal-people will suffer from diseases that could have been easily prevented-and Dr. Cannell does a great job of pointing that out.

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    What the Institute of Medicine SHOULD have said
    Dr. William Davis
    Tuesday, November 30, 2010

    The news is full of comments, along with many attention-grabbing headlines, about the announcement from the Institute of Medicine that the new Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) for vitamin D should be 600 units per day for adults.

    What surprised me was the certainty with which some of the more outspoken committee members expressed with their view that 1) the desirable serum 25-hydroxy vitamin D level was only 20 ng/ml, and 2) that most Americans already obtain a sufficient quantity of vitamin D.

    Here's what I believe the Institute of Medicine SHOULD have said:

    Multiple lines of evidence suggest that there is a plausible biological basis for vitamin D's effects on cancer, inflammatory responses, bone health, and metabolic responses including insulin responsiveness and blood glucose. However, the full extent and magnitude of these responses has not yet been fully characterized.

    Given the substantial observations reported in several large epidemiologic studies that show an inverse correlation between 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels and mortality, there is without question an association between vitamin D and mortality from cancer, cardiovascular disease, and all cause mortality. However, it has not been established that there are cause-effect relationships, as this cannot be established by epidemiologic study.

    While the adverse health effects of 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels of less than 30 ng/ml have been established, the evidence supporting achieving higher 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels remains insufficient, limited to epidemiologic observations on cancer incidence. However, should 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels of greater than 30 ng/ml be shown to be desirable for ideal health, then vitamin D deficiency has potential to be the most widespread deficiency of the modern age.

    Given the potential for vitamin D's impact on multiple facets of health, as suggested by preliminary epidemiologic and basic science data, we suggest that future research efforts be focused on establishing 1) the ideal level of 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels to achieve cancer-preventing, bone health-preserving or reversing, and cardiovascular health preventive benefits, 2) the racial and genetic (vitamin D receptor, VDR) variants that may account for varying effects in different populations, 3) whether vitamin D restoration has potential to exert not just health-preserving effects, but also treatment effects, specifically as adjunct to conventional cancer and osteoporosis therapies, and 4) how such vitamin D restoration is best achieved.

    Until the above crucial issues are clarified, we advise Americans that vitamin D is a necessary and important nutrient for multiple facets of health but, given current evidence, are unable to specify a level of vitamin D intake that is likely to be safe, effective, and fully beneficial for all Americans.

    Instead of a careful, science-minded conclusion that meets the painfully conservative demands of crafting broad public policy, the committee instead chose to dogmatically pull the discussion back to the 1990s, ignoring the flood of compelling evidence that suggests that vitamin D is among the most important public health issues of the age.

    Believe it or not, this new, though anemic, RDA represents progress: It's a (small) step farther down the road towards broader recognition and acceptance that higher intakes (or skin exposures) to achieve higher vitamin D levels are good for health.

    My view: Vitamin D remains among the most substantial, life-changing health issues of our age. Having restored 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels in over 1000 people, I have no doubt whatsoever that vitamin D achieves substantial benefits in health with virtually no downside, provided 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels are monitored.

    http://heartscanblog.blogspot.com/
    Last edited by Islander; 12-01-10 at 02:41 PM.

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    The endocrinologist I see at the VA for adrenal insufficiency and thyroid believes that Vitamin D levels should be at least 50 and if a person has or is at risk for osteoporosis, he wants it 60. Now this is a conventional doc but he hasn't been brainwashed. He is able to still think independently. He's a rare jewel for sure! He looked at my old labwork (Vitamin D 41) and told me he wants me to get it up to 50 ASAP.

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    Newest Vitamin D Brainwash
    Thursday, December 2, 2010
    From: "My Healing Kitchen" <no-reply@myhealingkitchen.com>

    Most democracies adhere to the rule of "innocent until proven guilty." But when it comes to vitamin D, this tenet has just been reversed.
    "The onus is on the people who propose extra calcium and vitamin D to show it is safe before they push it on people," announced Christopher Gallagher MD, of the Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha, Nebraska.
    Dr. Gallagher is echoing Tuesday's pronouncement from The Institute of Medicine's (IOM) Food and Nutrition Board (FNB) stating that calcium and vitamin D supplements are unnecessary and dangerous.
    Huh?
    This is in direct contradiction to numerous research studies showing that lower blood concentrations of vitamin D increase the risk of hip fractures in menopausal women by up to 70%.
    This was no small study, either. It involved 40,000 participants.
    And it is widely known that vitamin D and calcium work synergistically to improve bone health.
    What's even more troubling is that the mainstream media is jumping all over the story concluding that "vitamin D is now dangerous."
    And why? Has there been one publicized case of vitamin D toxicity or fatality? Not a single one.
    Just the opposite...
    Thousands of studies over the past decade show that that higher doses of vitamin D are protective for heart health, brain health, breast health, prostate health, pancreatic health, muscle health, nerve health, eye health, immune health, colon health, liver health, mood health, skin health -- and especially fetal health.
    Indeed, low levels of vitamin D actually increase the risk of dying from all causes by 150%, according to findings published in Nutrition Research.
    "In addition, a large meta-analysis involving 13,331 men and women published in 2010 known as the Third National Health and Nutritional Examination Survey (NHANES III) confirm that vitamin D supplementation is associated with decreased mortality." These results grabbed headlines around the world when they were published.
    Official guidelines are way too low
    If you want to optimize your vitamin D levels -- and not just for the bone benefits -- supplementing is crucial. But it's nearly impossible to significantly raise your vitamin D levels when supplementing at the FNB's meager 600 IU/day.
    Citing just two of the hundreds of recently published studies on vitamin D: Japanese researchers (Urashima, et. al.) gave 1,200 IU/day of vitamin D3 to Japanese 10-year-olds in a randomized controlled trial for six months. They found the vitamin D dramatically reduced the incidence of influenza A and asthma attacks compared to the placebo group.
    Likewise, a randomized controlled study of adults conducted by Professor Joan Lappe at Creighton University showed dramatic improvements in the health of internal organs when more than double the FNB's new recommendations were administered.
    An extremely biased and narrow-minded report
    Obviously, the FNB committee did not read the recent medical literature or consult today's leading vitamin D researchers.
    However, it did read a number of previously written opinions from such luminaries as Professor Robert Heaney of Creighton and Harvard University's Dr. Walter Willett at Harvard, one of the most respected nutritionist in the world.
    But incredibly, these opinions were excluded from the new FNB recommendations. And the FNB committee never explained why.
    How much vitamin D should you take?
    According to Dr. Heaney: "There is an impressive body of scientific evidence supporting levels higher than the IOM panel is currently recommending, and for reasons that are not entirely clear, the panel has discounted that evidence.
    "The public needs to know (this) evidence exists so that they can make up their own minds. It's helpful in making those decisions, to know that intakes higher than the IOM recommends are safe. For me, that makes the decision easy. Even if the evidence for a higher intake were uncertain (and I don't believe it is), intakes 2-5 times the IOM recommendations would carry a good chance for benefit at essentially no cost and no risk."
    So why the new lower recommendations?
    The news of vitamin D's protective benefits have caused sales to soar, growing faster than any supplement, according to The Nutrition Business Journal. Sales rose 82% from 2008 to 2009, reaching $430 million. Is the drug industry green with envy -- or afraid of the competition?
    One leading vitamin D authority estimates that higher doses would reduce US cancer costs alone by $50 billion per year -- and I don't believe the drug industry wants to see that happen.
    Big Pharma and Big Government have been trying to confiscate our vitamins for decades.
    Bad news such as this bogus vitamin D story usually precedes a big legislative push. So keep your eyes open -- and your pen handy.

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    Veteran Member Reesacat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    WooHoo! Another can of Whoop Ass for Vitamin D!!!

    Methinks the original report may actually help get the word out that there is a Vitamin D3 deficiency in the population............

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    Quote Originally Posted by Reesacat
    WooHoo! Another can of Whoop Ass for Vitamin D!!!

    Methinks the original report may actually help get the word out that there is a Vitamin D3 deficiency in the population............
    Geez, I like the way your mind works!

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    NY Times chimes in: Report Questions Need for 2 Diet Supplements
    By GINA KOLATA
    Published: November 29, 2010

    The very high levels of vitamin D that are often recommended by doctors and testing laboratories — and can be achieved only by taking supplements — are unnecessary and could be harmful, an expert committee says. It also concludes that calcium supplements are not needed. The group said most people have adequate amounts of vitamin D in their blood supplied by their diets and natural sources like sunshine, the committee says in a report that is to be released on Tuesday.
    “For most people, taking extra calcium and vitamin D supplements is not indicated,” said Dr. Clifford J. Rosen, a member of the panel and an osteoporosis expert at the Maine Medical Center Research Institute.
    Dr. J. Christopher Gallagher, director of the bone metabolism unit at the Creighton University School of Medicine in Omaha, Neb., agreed, adding, “The onus is on the people who propose extra calcium and vitamin D to show it is safe before they push it on people.”

    Over the past few years, the idea that nearly everyone needs extra calcium and vitamin D — especially vitamin D — has swept the nation. With calcium, adolescent girls may be the only group that is getting too little, the panel found. Older women, on the other hand, may take too much, putting themselves at risk for kidney stones. And there is evidence that excess calcium can increase the risk of heart disease, the group wrote.

    As for vitamin D, some prominent doctors have said that most people need supplements or they will be at increased risk for a wide variety of illnesses, including heart disease, cancer and autoimmune diseases.
    And these days more and more people know their vitamin D levels because they are being tested for it as part of routine physical exams. “The number of vitamin D tests has exploded,” said Dennis Black, a reviewer of the report who is a professor of epidemiology and biostatistics at the University of California, San Francisco. At the same time, vitamin D sales have soared, growing faster than those of any supplement, according to The Nutrition Business Journal. Sales rose 82 percent from 2008 to 2009, reaching $430 million. “Everyone was hoping vitamin D would be kind of a panacea,” Dr. Black said. The report, he added, might quell the craze. “I think this will have an impact on a lot of primary care providers,” he said.

    The 14-member expert committee was convened by the Institute of Medicine, an independent nonprofit scientific body, at the request of the United States and Canadian governments. It was asked to examine the available data — nearly 1,000 publications — to determine how much vitamin D and calcium people were getting, how much was needed for optimal health and how much was too much. The two nutrients work together for bone health. Bone health, though, is only one of the benefits that have been attributed to vitamin D, and there is not enough good evidence to support most other claims, the committee said.

    Some labs have started reporting levels of less than 30 nanograms of vitamin D per milliliter of blood as a deficiency. With that as a standard, 80 percent of the population would be deemed deficient of vitamin D, Dr. Rosen said. Most people need to take supplements to reach levels above 30 nanograms per milliliter, he added.
    But, the committee concluded, a level of 20 to 30 nanograms is all that is needed for bone health, and nearly everyone is in that range.

    Vitamin D is being added to more and more foods, said Paul R. Thomas of the Office of Dietary Supplements at the National Institutes of Health. Not only is it in orange juice and milk, but more is being added to breakfast cereals, and it now can be found in very high doses in supplement pills. Most vitamin D pills, he said, used to contain no more than 1,000 international units of it. Now it is easy to find pills, even in places like Wal-Mart, with 5,000 international units. The committee, though, said people need only 600 international units a day.

    To assess the amounts of vitamin D and calcium people are getting, the panel looked at national data on diets. Most people, they concluded, get enough calcium from the foods they eat, about 1,000 milligrams a day for most adults (1,200 for women ages 51 to 70).
    Vitamin D is more complicated, the group said. In general, most people are not getting enough vitamin D from their diets, but they have enough of the vitamin in their blood, probably because they are also making it naturally after being out in the sun and storing it in their bodies.
    The American Society for Bone and Mineral Research and other groups applauded the report. It is “a very balanced set of recommendations,” said Dr. Sundeep Khosla, a Mayo Clinic endocrinologist and the society’s president.
    But Andrew Shao, an executive vice president at the Council for Responsible Nutrition, a trade group, said the panel was being overly cautious, especially in its recommendations about vitamin D. He said there was no convincing evidence that people were being harmed by taking supplements, and he said higher levels of vitamin D, in particular, could be beneficial.
    Such claims “are not supported by the available evidence,” the committee wrote. They were based on studies that observed populations and concluded that people with lower levels of the vitamin had more of various diseases. Such studies have been misleading and most scientists agree that they cannot determine cause and effect.

    It is not clear how or why the claims for high vitamin D levels started, medical experts say. First there were two studies, which turned out to be incorrect, that said people needed 30 nanograms of vitamin D per milliliter of blood, the upper end of what the committee says is a normal range. They were followed by articles and claims and books saying much higher levels — 40 to 50 nanograms or even higher — were needed.
    After reviewing the data, the committee concluded that the evidence for the benefits of high levels of vitamin D was “inconsistent and/or conflicting and did not demonstrate causality.”

    Evidence also suggests that high levels of vitamin D can increase the risks for fractures and the overall death rate and can raise the risk for other diseases. While those studies are not conclusive, any risk looms large when there is no demonstrable benefit. Those hints of risk are “challenging the concept that ‘more is better,’ ” the committee wrote.
    That is what surprised Dr. Black. “We thought that probably higher is better,” he said.
    He has changed his mind, and expects others will too: “I think this report will make people more cautious.”

    http://tinyurl.com/35qjyhc

    And if you click on Comments (most of which represent the better educated of the NYTimes readers), you'll find some excellent ones, including #20, reprinted here:

    wbgrant, San Francisco
    November 30th, 2010
    The Dietary Reference Intakes for Calcium and Vitamin D committee was constrained in the studies they could use in their evaluation. They could not use case-control studies in which serum vitamin D was measured at time of diagnosis and they could not consider ecological studies that used solar ultraviolet-B doses as the index of vitamin D production. Many randomized controlled trials used too little vitamin D (400 IU/day) to find an effect. The health benefits of vitamin D extend to at least 100 types of disease, with the strongest evidence for many types of cancer (breast, colon, ovarian, pancreatic, prostate, and rectal), cardiovascular disease, diabetes types 1 and 2, respiratory infections such as type A influenza and pneumonia, other infections such as sepsis, autoimmune diseases such as multiple sclerosis. The level of 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D} in the blood, which is measured in vitamin D tests, should be around 40 ng/ml for optimal health. White Americans on average have 26 ng/ml, while African-Americans have 16 ng/ml due to their darker skin that reduces production of vitamin D from solar UVB. Raising serum vitamin 25(OH)D levels to 40 ng/ml could reduce mortality rates by 15% in the United States, corresponding to a 2-year increase in life expectancy. It is amazing that with all the studies in the past decade reporting beneficial effects of vitamin D for a variety of diseases and conditions, a government-sponsored panel could not bring itself to recommend the 1000 to 2000 IU/day required by most people to raise serum 25(OH)D levels to near the optimal value while the FDA will approve a pharmaceutical drug on the basis of one good randomized controlled trial without understanding the adverse effects as in the case of Vioxx. Those interested in vitamin D can search the web for more information on the health benefits of vitamin D.
    Recommended by 388 Readers

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    Vitamin D warnings: Ignore them
    From:"Dr. Robert J. Rowen" <DrRobertJRowen@Letters.SecondOpinionNewsletter.co m>
    December 3, 2010

    I'm sure you've read the news and heard the reports on vitamin D. The prestigious Institute of Medicine just upped their vitamin D recommendation from a mere 400 IU per day to a still-paltry 600 IU per day. And they didn't stop there.
    They claim most people get enough vitamin D each day. They say no one should take more than 4,000 IU each day. And they say that vitamin D testing is like "the wild, wild West."

    I've told you for years that everyone needs to take at least 5,000 IU daily. Now this report says I'm wrong. So what should you believe?

    Well for starters, don't believe that 600 IU of vitamin D is enough for good health. You need many times that amount to reach high blood levels of vitamin D. Literally hundreds of studies show the health benefits of high levels of vitamin D. High levels of vitamin D build strong bones, support your eyes and heart, boost your immune system, and help relieve joint discomfort.
    Don't believe that no one should take more than 4,000 IU per day, either. Your body produces 5,000-10,000 IU just from being outside for an hour on a sunny summer day. So why would taking that much in the cold, dark winter do you any harm? It doesn't. No doctor I know has seen any harmful effects from that amount. In fact, I routinely recommend my cancer patients take 10,000 IUs daily, or even 50,000 IU twice weekly, with no toxicity.

    And that part about vitamin D testing being the "wild, wild West"? Bunk. They're not slamming testing labs because the results are inaccurate. No, they're slamming labs because they think you only need enough vitamin D to avoid a serious deficiency.
    You see, there's a simple test to measure the level of vitamin D in your blood. Everyone — even the Institute of Medicine — agrees that levels below 20 nanograms per milliliter indicate a "serious deficiency." Yet, in the same breath, they said that the too-low level of 20 ng/mL is enough for good health. That's like telling a patient that a blood pressure of 120/80 is "normal," but if your BP goes up to 121/81, your blood pressure is seriously high! It's just sheer lunacy. This group is so confused, it's sad. But it's also very dangerous. This report will end up harming a lot of people.

    The truth is that there's an epidemic of vitamin D deficiency in this country. Nearly every patient I test is low - including myself and my wife!

    I see levels less than 40 in almost every known osteoporosis patient. I see levels in this range with cancer patients as well. Without adequate levels of vitamin D, death often comes quickly.

    Consider this: There's not enough sunlight in Boston during the winter months to make ANY vitamin D. How are these folks supposed to make up the shortfall? What's more, being outdoors is no assurance you're making enough vitamin D on your own. I've reported on a study from Hawaii that showed unexpected variations in the amount of vitamin D different people make when exposed to the same amount of sunlight. Personal levels of vitamin D production will vary based on latitude, skin color, and time spent outdoors. So this one-size fits all mentality isn't medicine. It's politics.

    I was pleased that the news reports included "respected" dissenters from major medical centers across the country, including Harvard, UC San Diego, and Johns Hopkins. Some of these experts are calling for up to 4,000 IU daily, not too far from my 5,000 IU recommendation. Dr. John Cannell, of the non-profit Vitamin D Council, is in the thick of all the emerging research. He believes that a level of 70ng/mL is optimal. I push my patients to that level. So follow me and ignore the new warnings. I'm sticking with my daily 5,000 IU dose, especially in winter. I suggest that you do so as well.
    Yours for better health and medical freedom,


    Robert J. Rowen, MD
    Ref: Nutr Res. 2010 Sep;30(9):601-6.

  14. #14
    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    Oh, and BTW: you can buy the original report for a mere $78...or see an unedited, uncorrected proof on line, in very fuzzy eyestrain mode, here: http://books.nap.edu/openbook.php?re...d=13050&page=1
    Last edited by Islander; 08-06-11 at 09:00 AM.

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    Default Re: Institute of Medicine Report on Vitamin D is Wrong, Wrong, Wrong

    A Return To The Dark Ages

    Nutrition Board Confuses "Normal" With "Healthy" And Sets New Vitamin D Requirements To Levels That Condemn Americans To Chronic Illness
    NOVEMBER 30, 2010
    By Bill Sardi

    On a day that should have been heralded as "D-Day" for vitamin D's conquest over chronic disease, it is being called "disease day" by critics of new vitamin D guidelines issued by health authorities today.

    Confusing the commonly-found range of vitamin D (20–30 nanograms per milliliter of blood serum) with the healthy range (50–80 ng/mL says the Vitamin D Council), the nation's Food & Nutrition Board (F&NB) ignored experts who have made strong appeals for higher doses in fortified foods and vitamin pills.

    What the F&NB cannot fathom is how widespread vitamin D-related illness is. If 97% of Americans have a vitamin D level that falls within the 20–30 nanogram range as the F&NB says, and most of the people experience less than optimal health in this range, then this certainly cannot be assumed to be a normally healthy range.

    Dr. William Grant, of the Sunlight, Nutrition, and Health Research Center (SUNARC) in San Francisco, suggests hundreds of thousands of Americans would avert premature death if their blood levels of vitamin D extended beyond the F&NBs normal range. He calculates an estimated 400,000 premature deaths per year could be avoided if all Americans raised their serum vitamin D levels just to the 45 nanogram level. "This would reduce the mortality rate by 15% and extend life expectancy by about 2 years."

    ...

    Bill Sardi is an author, consumer advocate, and long-time investigative health journalist.

    © 2010 Bill Sardi, Knowledge of Health, Inc. Not for posting on other websites.

    for the remainder of this excellent assessment, please go to the Vitamin D Council website:
    http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/sardi...d-report.shtml
    Last edited by Islander; 12-05-10 at 11:39 AM.

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