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Thread: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

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    Veteran Member Jane Chitty's Avatar
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    Default Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    Jane Chitty
    20 March 2012

    Reesacat asked me if I would add this post to the HH forum.

    Vitamin D is not a vitamin at all but a feel good hormone that is probably the single most important factor in human health and, unfortunately, much of the world's population is deficient in this vital vitamin (hormone).

    According to D*Action, every tissue in our bodies needs vitamin D and will not work correctly if we do not get enough. In its most extreme forms, vitamin D deficiency produces rickets in children and osteomalaccia (bone softening) in adults.

    For some background on D*Action - it is made up of a consortium of scientists, institutions and individuals committed to solving the worldwide vitamin D deficiency epidemic. GrassrootsHealth has launched a worldwide public health campaign to solve the vitamin D deficiency epidemic through a focus on testing and education with all individuals spreading the word. Everyone is invited to join in this campaign! Join D*action and test twice a year during a 5 year program to demonstrate the public health impact of this nutrient.

    They go on to say: Milder degrees of deficiency are now understood to be one of the causes of a vast array of chronic diseases, including osteoporosis, impaired immune competence, various autoimmune diseases (such as diabetes and multiple sclerosis), several cancers including breast, colon, lung, lymphoma and prostate, high blood pressure, pregnancy complications and cardiovascular disease. All may develop because of, or be exacerbated by, vitamin D deficiency.

    Asking the body to deal with these disorders without adequate vitamin D is like asking a fighter to enter battle with one hand tied behind his/her back.

    Important points to remember about raising your vitamin D levels:

    - Vitamin D from sun exposure is the BEST way to optimize your vitamin D levels; exposing a large amount of your skin until it turns the lightest shade of pink, as near to solar noon as possible.

    - A vitamin D3 supplement can be taken orally. Research published by Grassroots Health from the D*Action study shows the average adult needs to take 8,000 IU's of vitamin D per day in order to elevate their levels above 40 ng/ml, which they believe is the absolute minimum for disease prevention. Vitamin D3 supplements are easily obtained from a health store and research has shown that vitamin D3 is approximately 87 percent more potent in raising and maintaining vitamin D concentrations and produces 2- to 3-fold greater storage of vitamin D than does D2 (which is the version available from your doctor in prescription form). D3 is also converted into its active form 500 percent faster. So it is important to remember D3 rather than D2 when supplementing your vitamin D levels and of course you d not need a prescription for vitamin D3.

    - Only animal-based food sources, such as fish, egg yolk and raw milk, contain D3. Unfortunately, these levels are low and will not be enough to raise your levels if you do not have sufficient sunlight or take a supplement.

    How to test your vitamin D levels

    You can find out your vitamin D levels using a 25(OH)D test, also called 25-hydroxyvitamin D. This can be done by your local lab taking a blood sample and carrying out the test for you or The Grassroots Health D*Action study allows you to test your levels at home.

    Towards the end of 2011, I joined the D*Action study group when they were specifically asking for women over the age of 60 (worldwide) who did not currently suffer from cancer. All the necessary application forms were completed on line and I waited to receive my vitamin D testing kit which arrived promptly.

    It just shows how wrong you can be when it comes to vitamin D testing. I was confident (having spent time in the sun daily for most of my life and because I lived in a warm sunny country) that I would be well into the safe levels. I was shocked to receive my results (a month later) which showed only a level of 24 ng/ml (indicating a moderate to mild deficiency). I decided to have my blood tested at a local lab for a 100% confirmation and the result came back 24.9 ng/ml.

    On doing further research, I have found that the darker your skin, the less vitamin D is absorbed from sunlight (I have quite a dark skin tone – Mediterranean) and as you age, absorption also decreases. So a rude personal awakening on the importance of vitamin D testing. Needless to say, I have upped my sunlight exposure AND have been taking 8000 IU s Vitamin D3 supplement daily since the beginning of 2012. I will be very interested to receive the results of my next test (6 monthly) due at the end of May.

    I know it is hard to imagine but just the simple step of optimizing your vitamin D levels may be one of the most important rungs you can climb on the ladder to your long-term health.

    http://www.amoils.com/health-blog/vi...en-tested-yet/
    Last edited by Jane Chitty; 03-20-12 at 07:22 AM.

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    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    Thanks for this information, Jane! If you have trouble finding a local lab, and don't qualify for the study Jane mentioned, you can search online for vitamin D testing through the mail (except in NY state). These tests are not expensive but shop around, because prices do vary.
    ➤ Happiness is the frosting on the cake of contentment.

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    Veteran Member Reesacat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    Great article Jane — thank you so much for sharing it with us.

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    Veteran Member Reesacat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    WooHoo! Just got my 25 (OH) D Vitamin D level back — 90 ng/ml (32-100 ng/ml normal range). I had been taking 20,000 IU/day since being sick in January.
    Last edited by Reesacat; 04-24-12 at 02:59 PM.

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    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    Wow. Congratulations! What a testimonial to megadoses. Are you going to cut back a bit now? (That would be my suggestion — go to a maintenance level).
    ➤ Happiness is the frosting on the cake of contentment.

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    Veteran Member Jane Chitty's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    That is good news! Can't wait for my next D*Action vitamin D level test in a month or two. Isn't it amazing how much pleasure small things can give!

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    Veteran Member Reesacat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    I plan on going back to my usual 10,000 IU day if I don't get sun.

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    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    I think Jane posted her Grassroots Health results somewhere but I don't see them in this thread.
    Last year my local September test was 76 but by November it had dropped a bit.
    This year my local September test was 80 and you can see the November result below.

    Date of Test D2 (ng/mL) D3 (ng/mL) Total (ng/mL) Laboratory Ref Range
    11/14/2011 5 60 65 32-100 ng/mL
    11/09/2012 < 4 80 80 32-100 ng/mL

    My maintenance dose has been 10,000 IU/day. Occasionally (when I think of it) I'll do a week of 15,000. Seems to be working!
    ➤ Happiness is the frosting on the cake of contentment.

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    Veteran Member mellowsong's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    80 is fantastic Islander! I haven't been tested in at least a year and 1/2 but my maintenance is 8000 to 10,000 IU/day. I'd gotten up to 63 but then fell back in the 40s for some reason. I'm hoping that D3 will be included with some lab work being done next week by a civilian doctor.

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    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    Let us know, k?
    ➤ Happiness is the frosting on the cake of contentment.

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    Veteran Member mellowsong's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    Quote Originally Posted by Islander View Post
    Let us know, k?
    I will. I'm hoping for an amazing number, lol....I'd like to see 75+.

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    Veteran Member Reesacat's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    Great results, Islander!

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    Veteran Member Mr. Wizard's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    Good basic article and a good reminder of the benefits of D3. Contrary to the results of the D'Action study, I've been able to get my levels above 40 on far less than 8,000 IUs per day. For the past year, I've supplemented 1,000 IUs twice per day. I also eat plenty of wild caught Alaskan Sockeye salmon, which contains plenty of D3, and I spend about 2 hours in the sun 4 days a week. Several months ago, I tested at 48. I'd like to get it higher, but my body does strange things when I supplement with more than 2,000 IUs per day.

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    Administrator Islander's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    I'm in the sun nude, for 30 minutes every sunny day in summer. Then I have to supplement the rest of the year to hold that level.
    ➤ Happiness is the frosting on the cake of contentment.

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    Veteran Member Jane Chitty's Avatar
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    Default Re: Vitamin D - have you been tested yet?

    Well done, Islander. Have not had my current result back from D*Action yet but the blood test had to travel from here to the US and I must have posted it about 2 to 3 weeks ago. Am waiting eagerly to know if there has been an improvement as I have been supplementing all year with 8000 IUs daily PLUS spending 30 minutes to an hour in the sun almost every day. This time last year I was at 25 ng/ml.

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