Vitamin D the “Sunshine Vitamin”

Historically, the role of Vitamin D in speeding up the absorption of calcium into bone has been well documented.

Dr. Michael Holick of Boston University Medical Centre has cautioned about the potential implications of Vitamin D insufficiency.

CARDIOVASCULAR- Regulation of blood pressure, heart muscle cell growth, and strength of contraction of the heart muscle are less than optimal when an individual is Vitamin D deficient.

MUSCULAR -Vitamin D deficiency has been implicated in muscle aches.

DIABETES- Low Vitamin D may reduce the body’s sensitivity to insulin and may regulate fat cell fat accumulation.

IMMUNE SYSTEM- Vitamin D helps regulate and support the immune system

As Vitamin D is fat soluble and therefore incorporated in body fat, oral Vitamin D in obese people with a Body Mass Index greater than 30 have a greater requirement than those of normal weight.

The body has a huge capacity to make Vitamin D in the skin from exposure to sunlight or simulated sunlight. This ability decreases with age (70% less at 70 years of age).

Supplementation with oral Vitamin D may be compromised in individuals with malabsorption syndromes. The common belief today is that a normal adult requires 1500-2000 IU from supplementation and diet to avoid deficiency. However, the recommended average daily requirement by the Food and Nutrition Board is 400 IU with a safe upper limit of 2000 IU.

Foods such as fatty fish are among the best sources with beef liver, cheese, egg yolks, and mushrooms having limited amounts. Some cereals and milk may be fortified with Vitamin D as well.

It is wise to talk to your health care provider to determine what dietary supplements are right for you and what effects they could have if you take them with other dietary supplements or medications.


This information is provided by Pat Stapley Chase to help educate and stimulate consideration on dietary supplementation for enhanced quality and performance in life.