Vitamin D- sunshine in a tablet

You may have heard people talk about being low in Vitamin D, the truth is, most people are.

Surprisingly in Australia, vitamin D insufficiency continues to be detected year-round from Brisbane down to Hobart.

In the summer months, insufficiency rates are as high as

  • 30% in south-east Queensland,
  • -10% in Geelong, and
  • 35% in Tasmania.

So why worry if your Vit D Deficient?

The truth is, VitD has many important functions in our body, and actually acts a hormone. We know that hormones are chemical messengers in our body that regulate nearly all of our bodily functions.

Some of the important functions Vit D has are, and low vit D has been linked to many diseases such as

  1. MS
  2. Diabetes Type 1 & 2
  3. Various types of cancers, colon cancer
  4. Heart Disease
  5. Ulcerative Colitis and Chron’s Disease
  6. Asthma
  7. Important for the maintain of healthy Immune Function

Interestingly, a study published in November last year in the American Journal of Hypertension of 413 women aged 24 to 44 found those with vitamin D insufficiency were three times more likely to develop hypertension than those with normal levels.

 “Very low vitamin D causes bone and muscle pain and poor bone mineralization. This can result in rickets in children and osteomalacia in adults. Low vitamin D is also a contributor to osteopenia and osteoporosis,”

Victorian Government Report

Australian government is currently spending $100 million a year in testing for vitamin D deficiency.

So what does this all mean, and how can you increase your Vit D intake?

During the summer months, just outside the peak ultraviolet radiation B times of 10am to 3pm, it is recommended all Australians go outside mid-morning or mid-afternoon for a brisk walk for six to eight minutes, exposing their arms, face and hands.

Professor Michael Holick, endocrinologist and world-renowned vitamin D specialist, suggests “All adults can supplement with at least 2000IU daily with little risk of toxicity, even with long-term supplementation. The only time to screen should be when treating those at higher risks of toxicity: those with sarcoidosis, tuberculosis, Williams syndrome, and any other diseases of vitamin D hypersensitivity.”

Department of Health, Victoria, Adult Dosing Schedule²

• 30-49 25(OH)D nmol/L (mild deficiency): Daily dose 1000-2000IU/day.

• 12.5-29 25(OH)D nmol/L (moderate deficiency): Daily dose 3000-5000IU/day for at least 6-12 weeks.

• Recommended to recheck 25(OH)D level at 3 months, then every 12 months.

Note: The TGA’s and BioCeuticals® recommended daily dose is 1000IU daily. BioCeuticals® is a practitioner-only brand and must be recommended by healthcare professionals

So, what do your vitamin D levels look like?