More importantly, what do you need Vitamin D for?
Well those of us that live in the beautiful mountainous terrain of Vancouver, are far enough away from the equator (as are all Canadians) to put us at high risk of Vitamin D Defiiciency. An estimated ONE BILLION people worldwide are deficient in Vitamin D.
Did you know that Vitamin D is also the only vitamin that is also a hormone. After it is consumed in the diet or absorbed through the skin from the SUN< vitamin D is transported to the liver and kidneys where it is converted to its active hormone form. Vitamin D assists with the absorption of calcium, helping to build strong bones, teeth and muscles.
Its pivotal role in calcium absorbtion as well as its ability to activate genes that strengthen the immune system and release neurotransmitters such as DOPAMINE and SEROTONIN ( our feel good hormones), means that Vitamin D is ESSENTIAL for efficient brain function and development
( essential in all parts of pregnancy and breastfeeding).
Depression, lowered mood or SAD, seasonal affective are often associated with the darkest times of the year, as well as the least amounts of sunshine ((therefore, less Vit D is absorbed through our skin and activated by our liver and kidneys) …. Can be positively changed by increasing the amounts of Vitamin D in our blood… in the months leading up to winter….
Many of my patients come in with Vit D in a pill form. All Vitamin D supplements are not created equal…. Finding a Naturopathic Doctor to test your levels, recommend a dosage per day based on your blood results, and guide you to the right form of Vitamin D3 ( Cholecalciferol in liquid form, as Vitamin D is a fat soluble vitamin).
Testing Vitamin D levels is essential in many patients. Different medical doctors will argue and substantiate different ranges of Vit D, however, the new normal is clinically considered to be above 30ng/mol, and even then I prefer to see patients between 50ng/mol-75ng/mol. Vitamin D levels need to be monitored and are often retested every 3 months.
People with the following are at greater risk of Vit D deficiency; obesity, liver disease, celiac and renal disease, the elderly, and those with darker skin ( because higher amount of melanin decreases absorbtion of Vitamin D).