☀️ Myth: If I get some sun occasionally, I have enough Vitamin D.
✔️ Fact: We do get some Vitamin D from the sun but not as much as you think. Where you live has a large influence on the strength of the sunlight you can even expose yourself too. The angle of the sun and the strength of its rays influences the production of Vitamin D. For example, anyone living above 35 degrees parallel north could stand outside naked in the months from October to February and produce NO Vitamin D at all! This means everyone living above the southern border of Tennessee is not getting Vitamin D for 5 months out of the year unless they supplement. Also, the majority of commercially available multivitamins contain a Vitamin D3 dose between 400 and 600IU which provides little real-world benefit reflected in chronically low 25-hydroxyvitamin D blood levels.
❔ Why is this important? A considerable volume of research has been done regarding the health benefits and optimal level and dosing for Vitamin D. Low levels of D have been linked to numerous conditions including diabetes, vascular disease, chronic inflammation, psychological disorders, autoimmune diseases, and a higher risk for cancers including ovarian, breast and colon cancer.
📖 Research shows that Vitamin D blood levels between 50 and 80ng/mL result in a lower risk of the diseases discussed above. Many lab ranges do not flag 25-hydroxyvitamin D until they fall below 30ng/mL!
❓ What does this mean? While multivitamin use is not discouraged, having your 25-hydroxyvitamin D level drawn to evaluate your need for Vitamin D supplementation is highly recommended for health promotion and disease prevention. Ideal dosage ranges from 2,000 to 10,000 IU daily depending on your baseline and dosage should be decided upon after initial lab testing.