Welcome to the first episode of the Dr. Geo Podcast, and I’m kicking off this show with one of the most crucial supplements that I think everyone should be taking, and that supplement is Vitamin D.
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Vitamin D is so critical to our health, mood, and immune system, and it’s such a concern that most Americans are not receiving the recommended amount of Vitamin D. Vitamin D is also crucial in the production of testosterone so, in this article, I decided to cover some commonly asked questions surrounding Vitamin D, supplementation and more.
How Does Vitamin D Work
Vitamin D is essential, and contrary to popular belief, it is not only a vitamin, it is a hormone as well. Your skin produces vitamin D once it’s exposed to sunlight and radiation. Once your skin is exposed to ultraviolet light, it starts to process vitamin D in the body, so the best form I believe in getting Vitamin D is through sunlight exposure. Your liver and kidneys play a crucial role in converting Vitamin D into the body, so keeping your liver and kidneys healthy is essential.
How Do I Get Vitamin D During The Year
So if you’re like me and live in New York City, you know no one is going out into the cold when it’s 25 degrees outside and going to get Vitamin D. It’s just not happening. So yes, in the wintertime, you need more vitamin D than you probably need in the spring and certainly in the summer. You’re going to want to get a Vitamin D Supplement you can take.
Now in the warmer months like spring and summer, you’re going to want to get outside to get your vitamin D. The thing to remember is that to get vitamin D most effectively, you’re going to want to be in the sun for about 15 minutes a day with no sunscreen. Once you apply sunscreen to your skin, it reduces vitamin D production because sunscreen blocks the ultraviolet rays from entering your skin, as I mentioned above.
With skin pigmentation, the darker your complexion, the more vitamin D3 you will need, which means you will want to potentially increase your sun exposure longer than the 15 minutes I suggested. When going out in the sun, I suggest that you have most of your body exposed no longer than 15 minutes a day.
When it comes to food regarding Vitamin D, it does not have as much Vitamin D as you think but to get some form of Vitamin D from food, stick to eating grass-fed and organic foods. A good source of Vitamin D3 is salmon, and roughly three ounces will give you about 500 units of Vitamin D3.
How much Vitamin D Should I Be Taking?
I get asked this often by some of my audience members and followers about how much Vitamin D they should be taking. It boils down to the person with the perfect dosage and also depends on the amount of Vitamin D3 you have in your bloodstream at any given time. Dosage recommendations have changed over the last twenty years or so. I remember when naturopathic and functional medicine or integrative doctors were giving 2000 units a day of vitamin D3 back, which at that time seemed like a very high amount. Now, the dosage for Vitamin D for 2000 units is being sold on store shelves and viewed by some as a very low dosage of supplementation for Vitamin D. The amount of Vitamin D3 you want is where you can get roughly 50 nanograms per millimeter. You’ll want to get tested for Vitamin D3 levels to determine your baseline.
It’s important to know that why 2000 units won’t get you to roughly 50 nanograms is determined by your size. If you are a big guy, you’ll need way more. If you have a darker skin complexion, you’ll need more because of the melanin in your skin and, statistically, are more at risk of prostate cancer and other diseases, including diabetes and heart disease. The main reason is that these diseases correlate to Vitamin D deficiency.
So the bigger you are, and the darker your complexion is, the more Vitamin D you will need.
Can I die from taking an excessive amount of vitamin D3?
It is highly improbable that you can die from taking an excessive amount of Vitamin D3. Still, there are cases and reports from time to time where toxicity can occur due to manufacturing mislabeling or some other factor. I do know that you can have a hypersensitivity reaction to vitamin D so it’s essential to be aware of how your body feels when taking Vitamin D. Vitamin D also has an immunostimulatory effect with those who have higher levels of Vitamin d3 which means there is an immune response that creates anti-inflammatory benefits and anticoagulation benefits in the body which means that there is no clotting of the blood cells.
Does Vitamin D reduce the symptoms of Covid-19?
Studies suggest that those with higher COVID-19 levels that require critical care of hospitalization correlated with lower amounts of Vitamin d3 in their system. I think current studies show the importance of Vitamin D3 not just in battling COVID-19 but for overall health. During these times with a new virus in play, it is of the utmost importance to get proper levels of vitamin D in your bloodstream and through dietary supplementation. Vitamin D creates immunostimulatory benefits that will help your immune system and body lower the symptoms in cases of COVID-19.
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