You may already have a good awareness of the health implications of Vitamin D.

If so, hopefully there will be a few additional snippets in this posting to add to your knowledge base.

If, however, Vitamin D has slipped off your radar, this posting will offer you a background, and more importantly, links to ongoing sources of information on this vital but much neglected (until recently) nutrient.

I am indebted to The Vitamin D Council for permission to publish extracts from their website, as well as their newsletter to which you can subscribe from the site. The current Newsletter (March 14 2010) reports on some remarkable studies showing the importance of Vitamin D to cardiovascular health, hypertension, cholesterol control etc.

  • Austrian researchers have found that: “……..vitamin D is involved in the pathogenesis of cardiovascular diseases and arterial hypertension. The antihypertensive properties of vitamin D [have] direct effects on vascular cells, and effects on calcium metabolism, including prevention of secondary hyperparathyroidism. ………..The results of clinical studies largely, but not consistently, favor the hypothesis that vitamin D sufficiency promotes lowering of arterial blood pressure. In view of the multiple health benefits of vitamin D and the high prevalence of vitamin D deficiency, as well as the easy, safe, and inexpensive ways in which vitamin D can be supplemented, we believe that the implementation of public health strategies for maintaining a sufficient vitamin D status of the general population is warranted.”
  • A 2009 study found that higher vitamin D levels were strongly associated with better triglyceride levels and weakly associated with higher HDL (the good cholesterol) levels.
  • Adequate Vitamin D levels protect against infection, including Swine Flu (H1N1). The Vitamin D Newsletter reports that: “The Centers for disease control (CDC) has discovered that, of the 329 American children who have died so far from H1N1, vitamin D levels in the dead children were lower than in children who survived the swine flu.
  • For an excellent paper on the link between flu and Vitamin D levels, go to the website of Virology Journal that carries a robustly detailed description of the connection. Incidentally, this has been the most accessed paper for downloading OF ALL TIME from this prestigious journal.

The information offered below is taken (with permission) directly from the Vitamin D Website – run by the Vitamin D Council, a completely non-profit organisation, dependent on donations.

  • How To Get Enough Vitamin D

    There are 3 ways for adults to insure adequate levels of vitamin D:

    • regularly receive midday sun exposure in the late spring, summer, and early fall, exposing as much of the skin as possible (being careful to never burn).
    • regularly use a sun bed (avoiding sunburn) during the colder months.
    • take 5,000 IU per day for 2–3 months, then obtain a 25-hydroxyvitamin D test. Adjust your dosage so that blood levels are between 50–80 ng/mL (or 125–200 nM/L) year-round

  • Vitamin D Cofactors

    • magnesium
    • zinc
    • vitamin K2
    • boron
    • genestein
    • a tiny amount of vitamin A

    Magnesium is the most important of these co-factors. In fact, it is common for rising vitamin D levels to exacerbate any underlying magnesium deficiency. If one is having problems supplementing with vitamin D, a magnesium deficiency could be the reason why.

    Read more about vitamin D’s co-factors!

The product that I recommend for Vitamin D supplementation is manufactured by Biotics BioD-Mulsion Forte“….a liquid version.

The blurb for this product states that it contains:
“2000 IU per drop of vitamin D3 as a micro-emulsion for enhanced absorption and utilization, which is particularly important for those with malabsorption conditions. Clinical use of Biotics’ micro-emulsified vitamin D provides significant improvements in serum levels of 25-OH-vitamin D following supplementation

I prefer to get my D from the sun, in Corfu…..but when that’s not possible, the drops do the job.