Frequently Asked Questions
Vitamin D isn`t actually a vitamin. Rather, it`s a hormone precursor, the active component of which Calcitriol (the actual hormone) attaches to more than 2,700 sites on the human genome, and it turns on more than 1,000 genes, prompting them to do their jobs. In fact, Vitamin D probably affects every disease the body can contract. The evidence is particularly strong when it comes to vitamin D`s role in resisting infection, maintaining bone and muscle, and reducing cancer risks. It are these fundamental roles of vitamin D that affect our risk for so many different diseases.
Regular, safe sun exposure: If you're striving for the recommendation of 2000 IU a day, you may have to turn to vitamin D supplements or the sun as your vitamin D savior. Regular sun exposure can stimulate the human skin to produce quantities of vitamin D that far exceed your needs. Without a shadow of a doubt, sunlight is the largest single source of vitamin D for most people. It is important to not expose yourself to too much sun, as this can be harmful too. It has been calculated that if you expose your skin to sun in a bathing suit long enough to produce slight redness of the skin, you'll produce the equivalent of 10,000-25,000 IU of oral vitamin D. Just five to ten minutes in the sun two to three times a week, exposing your hands, legs, and arms, is more than adequate to satisfy your vitamin D requirements, and you're not likely to significantly increase your risk of skin cancer in the process. After your five to ten minutes of sun exposure, apply a broad spectrum sunscreen of minimum SPF 15 for the rest of your time in the sun. The good news is that you can't overdose on the vitamin D manufactured by your skin.
Best food source: According to the National Institute of Health, the best food source for vitamin D3 is fish products, such as: cod liver oil, salmon, tuna, and sardines. Insufficient intake of this hormone-like vitamin are implicated in the pathology of high blood pressure along with numerous other diseases.
Extensive research indicates that Vitamin D3 has the following benefits for various body functions:
HEART AND BLOOD PRESSURE
- Vitamin D supplementation can lower blood pressure.
- An additional study published in September 2012 suggested that low levels of vitamin D may increase the risk of heart attack and early death.
- Vitamin D is crucial for the absorption and metabolism of calcium and phosphorous, which have various functions, especially the maintenance of healthy bones.
- As a result vitamin D3 helps prevent post menopausal osteoporosis.
- Vitamin D3 can help you shed your winter weight as it has been proven to lower insulin, improve serotonin levels and enhance the immune system. A study completed by a team at Massey University showed women who were given a daily dose of 4,000 IU of vitamin D3 showed improvements in their insulin resistance after six months of supplementation.
WEIGHT LOSS and LEPTIN production:
- Vitamin D can blunt your appetite.
- Beyond the established immune-enhancing benefits, rising vitamin D levels are also known to activate the production of leptin, which helps us slim down by signaling our brain and our stomach.
- Control appetite and even improve fat-loss efforts.
- Vitamin D is probably linked to maintaining a healthy body weight.
- Research from the University of Minnesota found that higher vitamin D levels in the body at the start of a low-calorie diet improved weight-loss success.
- A study from Aberdeen University found that adequate levels of sunlight can significantly reduce obesity. After monitoring more than 3,100 post-menopausal women living in northeast Scotland over a two-year period they discovered that women who had the highest BMI also had the lowest amounts of vitamin D in their blood.
- Vitamin D3 is an immune system regulator.
- It may be an important way to arm the immune system against disorders like the common cold and influenza. The active form of vitamin D turns on genes involved in immunity and boosts levels of cathelicidin, a powerful germ-fighting compound.
- Vitamin D3 can reduce the severity and frequency of asthma symptoms.
- It may reduce the risk of developing multiple sclerosis. (Interestingly, multiple sclerosis is much less common the nearer you get to the tropics, where there is much more sunlight).
- Vitamin D3 has been shown to reduce the risk of developing rheumatoid arthritis in women.
- Vitamin D may have a key role in helping the brain to keep working well in later life and prevent diseases such as dementia.
- Various studies have shown that people with adequate levels of vitamin D have a significantly lower risk of developing cancer, compared to people with lower levels.
- Vitamin D deficiency was found to be prevalent in cancer patients regardless of nutritional status, in a study carried out by Cancer Treatment Centers of America.
The ideal way to optimise your vitamin D levels is through appropriate sun exposure. There are a number of reasons for this:
- When you expose your skin to the sun, your skin also synthesizes high amounts of cholesterol sulfate, which is very important for heart- and cardiovascular health. In fact, according to research, high LDL and subsequent heart disease may in fact be a symptom of cholesterol sulfate deficiency. Sulfur deficiency also promotes obesity and related health problems like diabetes.
- When exposed to sunshine, your skin also synthesizes vitamin D3 sulfate. This form of vitamin D is water soluble, unlike oral vitamin D3 supplements, which is unsulfated.
- The water-soluble form can travel freely in your bloodstream, whereas the unsulfated form needs LDL (the so-called "bad" cholesterol) as a vehicle of transport. There is reason to believe that many of the profound benefits of vitamin D are actually due to the vitamin D sulfate. As a result, it is suspected that the oral non-sulfated form of vitamin D might not provide all of the same benefits, because it cannot be converted to vitamin D sulphate.
- You cannot overdose when getting your vitamin D from sun exposure, as your body has the ability to self-regulate and only make what it needs.
Supplemental vitamin D comes in two forms:
- Ergocalciferol (vitamin D2)
- Cholecalciferol (vitamin D3)
They have long been regarded as equivalent but new studies offer compelling support that vitamin D3 is the one to supplement with as it is the same type of D vitamin created in your body when you expose your skin to sunlight. According to the latest research, D3 is approximately 87% more potent in raising and maintaining vitamin D than vitamin D2.
Vitamin D2– which is a synthetic version made by irradiating fungus and plant matter– is the form of vitamin D most often prescribed by doctors in the U.S.
For all health conditions, the nutraceuticals are individually tailored by the Health Renewal Doctor. The doctor will decide-based on your history, physical examination and blood tests what would be the best for you and your specific needs and/or deficiencies. Please do not self-medicate. Self-Medicating is done when a person takes prescription medication or nutraceuticals on their own without a doctor's supervision and/or consent. By not having a physical examination and blood testing done by a qualified medical practitioner, you could be not treating vital deficiencies or conditions such as elevated blood pressure and high sugar levels. In addition, there is no single supplement given to clients as there is no magic bullet that can support all the essential nutrients that one's body needs.
At Health Renewal we recommend that all individuals maintain a blood 25-hydroxyvitamin D level of 50– 80 ng/ml. Although conventional physicians usually consider the usual risk factors for disease, mainstream medicine has overlooked two important contributors that may play a significant role in most diseases-vitamin D3 and vitamin K2.
As one starts supplementing with vitamin D3, the body's requirement for vitamin K2 increases dramatically. Vitamin K2 is vital for heart and bone health as it directs calcium from the arteries were it is NOT needed to the bones where it is VITAL for bone strength. See Vitamin K 2.