Types of vitamin D supplements
Vitamin D is found in food sources and food supplements in two main forms, ergocalciferol (D2) and cholecalciferol (D3), which have a small difference in their chemical structure. Both of these forms are absorbed in the gut, but vitamin D3 is more absorbable. Vitamin D2 is often recommended for vegetarians because its source is plant-based.
How to determine the sufficiency of vitamin D in the body?
The best way to measure the level of vitamin D in the body is to measure the level of 25-hydroxyvitamin D in the blood and it is expressed in terms of nanomoles per liter (nmol/L) or nanograms per milliliter (ng/mL).
What should be the amount of vitamin D in the body?
In general, a blood level of less than 30 nmol or 12 ng of vitamin D means that your body does not have enough vitamin D for general health and bone health. And values above 125 nmol or 50 ng are very high. Vitamin D levels above 50 nmol or 20 ng are sufficient for most people.
Some groups are more susceptible to vitamin D deficiency than others, including:
Babies who are breastfed because the amount of vitamin D in breast milk is low and therefore these babies need 400 (IU) of vitamin D per day as a supplement.
Elderly people because the skin of these people, even if exposed to sunlight, cannot make as much vitamin D as in youth, and also in elderly people, the ability of the kidneys to convert vitamin D into its active form has decreased.
People with darker skin are more prone to vitamin D deficiency than people with light skin because their skin is less able to make this vitamin.
People with celiac disease and Crohn's disease, who cannot properly use fats in their body, and because vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, are exposed to the deficiency of this vitamin over time.
Obese or overweight people because in the body of these people, body fat is attached to vitamin D and does not allow it to enter the blood.
Can vitamin D be dangerous?
What are the side effects of vitamin D pills?
If the level of vitamin D in the blood is too high, it can cause complications for the body. Symptoms of vitamin D poisoning include nausea and vomiting, loss of appetite, constipation, fatigue, and weight loss. Also, the increase of vitamin D and calcium in the blood can cause a feeling of confusion, disturbance in awareness of time, place, and person, and disturbance in heart rhythm. Also, excessive consumption of vitamin D can damage the kidneys.
What should be the dose of vitamin D tablets?
The highest normal limit (daily limit) of vitamin D intake is 1000 to 1500 units for infants, 2500 to 3000 units for children 1 to 8 years old, and 4000 units for children 9 years and older, adults, and pregnant and lactating women.
Vitamin D poisoning almost always occurs as a result of the abuse of vitamin D supplements, and excessive exposure to sunlight cannot cause such a condition for the body because the body itself limits the amount of vitamin D production.
Translated by: Bita Sayadi