Getting Enough Vitamin D?


One of our family friends has been having problems with stress fractures from her running.  "But I take lots of calcium," she told me. 

Calcium is great, but what about Vitamin D?  Vitamin D is critical so your bones can take up and use the calcium you’re taking. Also, from a recent study, it seems to help prevent several different types of cancer, and is being recommended for patients with multiple sclerosis.

Many of us who are mostly indoors and who use sunscreen, don’t get enough. Find out if you have enough with a simple blood test. Ask your doctor to add a 25-OH vitamin D test at your next appointment.

Or, you can do a test at home called the ZRT Vit D Blood Spot Test (look on the web to order). We tested it against our hospital lab and the 3 readings were very close to the hospital lab’s results.

If you are deficient, take Vitamin D3 2,000-3,000 units daily for 3 months and have it rechecked. If your level is normal, for maintenance, you need between 400 and 1,000 IU daily of vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol), depending on your age and level of nutrition. Vitamin D3 is also in milk – 4 glasses will give you most of what you need if you’re not deficient already.

See Dr. Irwin’s new articles on Tips on Laser Photorejuvenation and Skin Imaging in our new Consumer Focus category.

Dr. Brandith Irwin, MD

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Hi, I’m Dr. Irwin. I believe that consumers deserve a medically trained and unbiased skin care advocate.

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