Vit D

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Vit D

Postby bromley » Sun Sep 18, 2005 11:05 am

Another piece of research about the benefits of Vit D.

After my two weeks in Florida in August (plenty of sun) I feel very very well. I'll continue with the oily fish through the winter. Are there any other sources of Vit D (apart from tablets)?

Difficult to understand the gender difference in MS (women 2-3 times the rate of men) in the context of Vit D. I suppose more men work outside (builders / farmers). I wonder if there has been any research into MS and occupations? One might expect that MS would be more prevalent among office workers than those who worked outside.


Addition - came across some other research on Vit D ... confe.html

I also recall reading that in Scandinavian countries, MS is more common inland than on the coast (on the coast they eat more oily fish - Vit D)

In the UK MS is more common in Scotland. The Scots may have a stronger Viking connection but they also get a lot less sun than England (particularly southern England)

At the ACTRIMS / ECTRIMS conference at the end of the month a number of presentations are covering the incidence of MS in women from Iran and Iraq. Given the traditions in these countires regarding clothes for women (very covered up), exposure to the sun is likely to be much lower than for men.

Vit D therefor appears to offer some protection from getting MS (perhaps a prevention strategy for the future will include Vit D?). But has anyone seen anything about any benefits when one has MS?

Also when buying Vit D supplements what should one be looking for? I have seen reference to D3?

Melody - you are our nutrition expert.
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No expert but here's my 2 cents worth

Postby Melody » Mon Sep 19, 2005 9:58 am

Hubby for years steered clear of the sun whenever he could as he just couldn't take the heat.(He was a roofer back then) Now he cotracts work to other's and has for about 10 years now. He also was not a big freshwater fish eater, This was before we found out he had MS. Now we are very big on both as well as supplementing with D3. He has so improved it would be hard to tell he even has MS. Hard to say what has had the effect as I went pretty heavy into diet, stretching as well as what I have listed below. As of yesterday he reported seeing color in his right eye the first time since Feb 9,1998 when he had the bout of optic neuritis. It was just a month or so ago he was able to make out shapes with that eye. It is unusual to say the least to show improvement after that type of time frame. I monitor all his symptom areas weekly and write down the results in a journal.

Hubby was diagnosed Jan 2005. On lipitor 40mg since Aug 20, 2004.On Copaxone since July 4,2005. Vitamin D3 2000iu-4000iu (depending on sunshine months)June 10 2005(RX:r. O'Connor) Omega 3 as well Turmeric

Vitamin D Toxicity

First, let me state that there are two types of vitamin D supplements: vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) which comes from fish oil and plant source D2 (ergocalciferol), which is found in fortified foods and some supplements. D2, found in plants and made active by irradiation, is less biologically active.

Vitamin D3 is found in eggs, organ meats, animal fat, cod liver oil and fish. It is the equivalent to the vitamin D3 formed on our skins from UV-B. You should stay away from the synthetic D2 as it is the one that has been shown to have toxicity at the higher dose ranges. You will only want to use vitamin D3.

There are newer reasons why vitamin D2 has a greater potential for harm. First, vitamin D binding protein has a weaker affinity for the vitamin D2 metabolites than vitamin D3. Second, unique biologically active metabolites are produced in humans from vitamin D2, but there are no analogous metabolites derived from vitamin D3.

There is no doubt that vitamin D2 is a synthetic analogue of vitamin D, with different characteristics. It is inappropriate to regard vitamin D2 as a vitamin. Future research into the toxicity of this vitamin needs to focus on vitamin D3 as being something distinct from vitamin D2, for which almost all our current toxicity data relate to.

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Vitamin D is found in very few food sources: brewer's yeast, mushrooms and wheat bran, eggs, fish, and fish's oil. For vegetarian the choice is limited but if they expose themselves to sunlight and consume regularly high food source in vitamin D they have nothing to worry about.

Sun exposure is by far our primary source of vitamin D. The darker you skin is the more sun exposure you need. 10 to 15 minutes every day of sun exposure on the face and the hand is sufficient. The vitamin we store during the summer lasts us during the winter. Do not choose your lunchtime to expose you to the sun. At this period of the day the sun is dangerous for your skin. Wait till mid-afternoon. You just need 15 minutes of exposure and not an afternoon lying under the sun. Too much sun without protection can lead to skin cancer.
John was diagnosed Jan 2005. On lipitor 20mg .On Copaxone since July 4,2005. Vitamin D3 2000iu-4000iu (depending on sunshine months)June 10 2005(RX::Dr. O'Connor) Omega 3 as well Turmeric since April 2005. Q10 60mg. 1500mg liquid Glucosamine Nov 2005.
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New article on D

Postby Melody » Mon Sep 19, 2005 6:44 pm

Health and economic benefits from sun exposure are much greater than risks: study
18 Sep 2005

Health and economic burdens from insufficient solar UVB irradiance and vitamin D greatly outweigh all known adverse health outcomes. These are the findings from a rigorous study published this week by the journal Photochemisty and Photobiology. Scientists investigated the annual number of cases and deaths due to cancer, multiple sclerosis, and osteoporotic hip fracture that likely could have been prevented with sufficient vitamin D as well as the number of cases and deaths from skin cancer and melanoma as well as cases of cataracts that likely have been prevented by avoiding excess UV irradiance. Economic burden values were then determined for these results.

It was estimated that about 50,000-63,000 annual cancer deaths in the U.S. (10% of all cancer deaths) could be prevented if all Americans had sufficient vitamin D. These findings are based on data in the Atlas of Cancer Mortality Rates for the United States, 1950-94, (, but are also supported by a number of recent reports that vitamin D plays a very important role in increasing survival once cancer is discovered. These deaths greatly outnumber the annual number of deaths from melanoma (8000) and skin cancer (2000).

In the UK, the preventable cancer deaths with sufficient vitamin D may be as high as 20% since oral intake is low and vitamin D produced from solar UVB is much lower than in the U.S.

In addition, UVB irradiance and vitamin D also provide important health benefits in preventing or ameliorating such conditions or diseases as bone diseases and muscle pain, multiple sclerosis, type 1 and type 2 diabetes mellitus, high blood pressure, etc. For more on these benefits, see Grant WB, Holick MF. Benefits and requirements of vitamin D for optimal health: a review. Altern Med Rev. 2005;10:94-111.

While more research is needed to check these results, there is already enough known about the health benefits of vitamin D to change public health policies now. In fact, conferences were held in the U.S. in the past couple of years to review the evidence relating to the health benefits of vitamin D and set new recommended levels. Final recommendations, however, have not been issued.

It is hoped that these results will provide further emphasis on the health benefits of UVB and vitamin D for maintaining optimal health and treating diseases and conditions. It is hoped that there will be a diminution of efforts to demonize UVB irradiance, as is being done in Australia, that additional foods such as bread be fortified with vitamin D, that guidelines for vitamin D increased, and that there be increased testing of serum vitamin D levels.

According to Cedric Garland, a coauthor of this study, and the first to link vitamin D to cancer risk reduction (in 1980), “This analysis estimates the number of cases and lives that could be saved, and the major economic savings that could result, from attempts to reduce incidence rates of several important cancers by improving vitamin D status. More specifically, it estimates the reduction in incidence of these cancers that is likely to result from oral intake of vitamin D3, or no more than 10-15 minutes spent daily in activity outdoors in sunlight (not exceeding 0.75 MED), by persons whose skin type and personal history will allow. It also estimates a possible, although unlikely, increase in risk of skin cancer that might theoretically result, and places the potentially competing risks in context. This comparison revealed that the vitamin D-based strategy for cancer risk reduction would have considerably greater benefits than risks.”

The title and abstract:
William B. Grant, Cedric F. Garland, and Michael F. Holick

Comparisons of estimated economic burdens due to insufficient solar ultraviolet irradiance and vitamin D and excess solar UV irradiance for the United States

Photochemistry and Photobiology, [Epub ahead of print]


Vitamin D sufficiency is required for optimal health, and solar ultraviolet B (UVB) irradiance is an important source of vitamin D. UVB and/or vitamin D have been found in observational studies to be associated with reduced risk for over a dozen forms of cancer, multiple sclerosis, osteoporotic fractures, and several other diseases.

On the other hand, excess UV irradiance is associated with adverse health outcomes such as cataracts, melanoma, and nonmelanoma skin cancer. Ecologic analyses are used to estimate the fraction of cancer mortality, multiple sclerosis prevalence, and cataract formation that can be prevented or delayed.

Estimates from the literature are used for other diseases attributed to excess UV irradiation, additional cancer estimates, and osteoporotic fractures. These results are used to estimate the economic burdens of insufficient UVB irradiation and vitamin D insufficiency as well as excess UV irradiation in the United States for these diseases and conditions. We estimate that 50,00063,000 Americans die prematurely from cancer annually due to insufficient vitamin D, and 19,00025,000 in the United Kingdom.

The U.S. economic burden due to vitamin D insufficiency from inadequate exposure to solar UVB irradiance, diet, and supplements is estimated at $4056 billion in 2004, whereas that for excess UV irradiance is estimated at $67 billion. These results suggest that increased vitamin D through UVB irradiance, fortification of food and supplementation could reduce the health care burden in the U.S., U.K., and elsewhere. Further research is required to confirm these estimates.

Available from: Click Here - Allen Press

The authors may be contacted as follows:

William B. Grant, Ph.D.
Sunlight, Nutrition and Health Research Center (SUNARC)
San Francisco, CA
1-415-776-5274 - voice
1-415-776-5270 - fax

Cedric F. Garland, Dr.P.H.
Department of Family and Preventive Medicine
University of California, San Diego
La Jolla CA 93093, USA
Tel. (619) 553-9016

Michael F. Holick, Ph.D., M.D.
Vitamin D, Skin and Bone Research Laboratory Professor
Section of Endocrinology, Diabetes, and Nutrition
Department of Medicine, Boston University Medical Center
Boston University School of Medicine

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John was diagnosed Jan 2005. On lipitor 20mg .On Copaxone since July 4,2005. Vitamin D3 2000iu-4000iu (depending on sunshine months)June 10 2005(RX::Dr. O'Connor) Omega 3 as well Turmeric since April 2005. Q10 60mg. 1500mg liquid Glucosamine Nov 2005.
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Some more on safety levels fo D

Postby Melody » Mon Sep 19, 2005 6:52 pm

Efficacy and safety of vitamin D3 intake exceeding the lowest observed adverse effect level.

Vieth R, Chan PC, MacFarlane GD.

Mount Sinai Hospital, Toronto, Ontario, Canada.

BACKGROUND: The Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences states that 95 microg vitamin D/d is the lowest observed adverse effect level (LOAEL). OBJECTIVE: Our objective was to assess the efficacy and safety of prolonged vitamin D3 intakes of 25 and 100 microg (1000 and 4000 IU)/d. Efficacy was based on the lowest serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D [25(OH)D] concentration achieved by subjects taking vitamin D3; potential toxicity was monitored by measuring serum calcium concentrations and by calculating urinary calcium-creatinine ratios. DESIGN: Healthy men and women (n = 61) aged 41 +/- 9 y (mean +/- SD) were randomly assigned to receive either 25 or 100 microg vitamin D3/d for 2-5 mo, starting between January and February. Serum 25(OH)D was measured by radioimmunoassay. RESULTS: Baseline serum 25(OH)D was 40.7 +/- 15.4 nmol/L (mean +/- SD). From 3 mo on, serum 25(OH)D plateaued at 68.7 +/- 16.9 nmol/L in the 25-microg/d group and at 96.4 +/- 14.6 nmol/L in the 100-microg/d group. Summertime serum 25(OH)D concentrations in 25 comparable subjects not taking vitamin D3 were 46.7 +/- 17.8 nmol/L. The minimum and maximum plateau serum 25(OH)D concentrations in subjects taking 25 and 100 microg vitamin D3/d were 40 and 100 nmol/L and 69 and 125 nmol/L, respectively. Serum calcium and urinary calcium excretion did not change significantly at either dosage during the study. CONCLUSIONS: The 100-microg/d dosage of vitamin D3 effectively increased 25(OH)D to high-normal concentrations in practically all adults and serum 25(OH)D remained within the physiologic range; therefore, we consider 100 microg vitamin D3/d to be a safe intake.

Publication Types:
Clinical Trial
Randomized Controlled Trial

PMID: 11157326 [PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]

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John was diagnosed Jan 2005. On lipitor 20mg .On Copaxone since July 4,2005. Vitamin D3 2000iu-4000iu (depending on sunshine months)June 10 2005(RX::Dr. O'Connor) Omega 3 as well Turmeric since April 2005. Q10 60mg. 1500mg liquid Glucosamine Nov 2005.
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