Wednesday, December 2, 2009

What's the big deal about vitamin D?

If you live in the Midwest during the winter, there’s a good chance that your vitamin D level is low.

Why? Because, particularly during the cold season, we do not spend enough time outside in the sunshine for our bodies to manufacture it naturally. Hey, it’s cold! Who wants to go outside, let alone expose skin, when the backyard is frozen tundra?

Vitamin D level testing is the latest trend in medicine. Apparently a vitamin D deficiency can be the cause of everything from fatigue to cancer to osteoporosis. So, why all the hype now?

Because the latest and greatest test, called the 25-hydroxy vitamin D test, has everybody talking about the importance of vitamin D. This test is big news because it is the most accurate way to measure vitamin D levels. So, everybody’s doing it and finding low vitamin D levels as a result.

Chris and I both tested low for vitamin D. We are both fair-skinned, and avoid the sun. Plus, Chris is lactose intolerant, so we try not to buy and consume a lot of dairy products that contain vitamin D.

Our personal physician, Dr. Jon Tosch, at Troy Internal Medicine , prescribed vitamin D therapy for both of us. We took 50,000 IU’s of vitamin D a week for eight weeks. Keep in mind, in high doses, vitamin D can be toxic. After completing the regimen, our levels returned to normal.

To keep vitamin D levels up, Dr. Tosch says we need 10 minutes unprotected sun exposure each day or a supplement of 1,000 IU’s daily. I’ve noticed that some multivitamins are adjusting their formulas to include this amount.

My cousin, Karen, who lives in Iowa, also tested low for vitamin D. After completing her D therapy, she says she noticed a difference in her energy level.

Is this just a passing medicinal fad – or could vitamin D really be the answer to many common ills? Only time will tell, but it might be worth a look.

To read more about women’s health and vitamin D, visit:

1 comment:

  1. Hi! Are you and Chris almost totally vegan?
    Do you consume dairy, eggs and fish? Do both of you consume soy milk and other soy products on a daily basis? Do you take vitamin supplements? Can you and Chris consume yogurt? It's packed with vitamin D.