Vitamin D3 the Sunshine Vitamin

 

Vitamin D3 is the only vitamin that we make. By using UVB sunlight to convert cholesterol found on the skin into vitamin D, which is then converted to vitamin D3 the most biologically active form of the vitamin. The fear however, of skin cancer has caused people to dramatically reduce their sun exposure thus limiting their vitamin D3 levels... Because dietary vitamin D is found primarily in organ meat our main source of this vitamin is sunlight. I encourage all my patients to take a vitamin D -3 supplement along with small amounts of sunlight, about 20 minutes daily when possible.

The amount of vitamin D3 required for good health ranges from 400-1000 IU/day for children under the age of 13 and 2000-8000 IU/day for adults. There are individuals who require higher amounts sometimes as high as 10-14,000 IU/day. The best way to determine adequate supplementation is to have a blood test to measure existing levels. This test is offered by most labs 25-hydroxyvitamin D which is then converted to Vitamin D3. The absorption of vitamin D can be adversely effected by the body's toxic load, a poor ratio of body fat to lean muscle, obesity, and elevated body mass index.

Vitamin D3 exerts its affects on various body functions. Vitamin D3 is essential for optimum calcium absorption in the gut. A deficiency of calcium may lead to osteoporosis, osteopenia, and osteomalasia, increasing the risk of fracture. Adequate amounts of calcium can protect bone strength. Vitamin D3 also has an important effect on the immune system. It sharpens the immune system's attack on specific unwanted microbes, while inhibiting the development of auto immune diseases like MS. It has been found that diseases like MS are more prevalent in northern latitude where sunlight isn't as plentiful as in southern latitudes. Vitamin D3 enhances the production of insulin... Adequate amounts of Vitamin D control insulin production thus providing a better functioning form of insulin and reducing the effects of metabolic syndrome.

Vitamin deficiency has also been noted in hypertension, glucose intolerance, fibromyalsia, chronic fatigue, chronic inflammation, polycystic ovarian disease, and cardio vascular disease.

When using supplements the preferred form is vitamin D3.

For any questions please call Dr Steven Felder at 914-939-3621

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