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Vitamin D

jyang949's picture

Vitamin D (post #69711)


A bone density test uncovered osteoporosis in my spine and hips, which shouldn't be showing up at my age (56), especially since I've been taking calcium supplements for years.

Blood tests show that I am very low on vitamin D, which is necessary for absorbing calcium. While that may not be the cause of my osteoporosis, a lack of vitamin D can lead to other problems including heart disease. The doctor prescribed vitamin D supplements.

Then I remembered that the body uses sunlight to synthesize vitamin D--but for years I have protected my skin from exposure to the sun and applied sunscreen (SPF 60) every day. This could be a reason for my low D levels!

Long story short: Protecting yourself from sun exposure is still the right choice, but you may need to add some vitamin D to your diet.


Heather's picture

Most people are low in (post #69711, reply #1 of 7)

Most people are low in Vitamin D.  The RDA is too low and will soon be raised.  I take 1000 I.U.s a day and have taken much higher doses at brief intervals as treatment for my osteoporosis.


Good luck treating your disease, you'll get lots of conflicting advice.  Improvements aren't easily measured, my insurance only allows a scan every two years, so it's hard to tell if there is any change or to link changes to a particular course of treatment.

Errol789's picture

To make Vitamin D more (post #69711, reply #5 of 7)

To make Vitamin D more available, it is involved to dairy products, juices and cereals products that are then said to be “fortified with suplement D.” But most vitamin D – 80% to 90% of what a person's human body gets – is obtained the sun light.  Vitamin D can also be made in the laboratory as medicine.

jyang949's picture

Just took my child to the (post #69711, reply #4 of 7)

Just took my child to the pediatrician, who  said that teenagers should be taking D₃ and calcium supplements. 


Gretchen's picture

All of this has become a (post #69711, reply #2 of 7)

All of this has become a current and choice item for discussion.  Whether or not you are "too young" for this may also depend on your genes.  Sunscreen has apparently been a two edged sword.  And have you examined the solubility of the calcium supplements you have taken--some are virtually passed through the body without any absorption.

jyang949's picture

You're probably right that (post #69711, reply #3 of 7)

You're probably right that avoiding sun exposure did not cause my vitamin D deficiency. But I still use strong sunblock every day--it just feels wrong when I don't!--and take calcium and vitamin D supplements.

By the way, the doctor said to read the label and buy supplements that say "vitamin D₃." Not sure how D₃ is different from ordinary D, but at that time (2½ years ago) I saw both kinds on the shelves.


Pielove's picture

Vitamin D (post #69711, reply #6 of 7)

Hi Janet,

Last week my daughter's pediatrician finally conviced me to give my daughter a Vitamin D supplement-- I generally try not to supplement unless it's really necessary, but she said it's recommended for even young children-- my daughter is only 8. How is your supplement working out?

Cheers, Jen

Abram1's picture

Vitamin D is (post #69711, reply #7 of 7)

Vitamin D is obviously necessary for our body and proper health and it is one of the most important vitamins,but we should always prefer having food which is rich in Vitamins rather than taking any pills or supplements.