Category Archives: Vitamin D

Useful Supplements for Parkinson’s Disease: Part 3

Dietary supplements, such as the vitamin B sup...
Dietary supplements, such as the vitamin B supplement show above, are typically sold in pill form. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

This is part 3 of my series on nutrition and Parkinson’s Disease.  Part One and Part Two can be  found preceding, focusing on foods to eat or to avoid.  This section is on supplements.

While Dr. Terry  Wahls‘ experience with MS shows food to be more effective than supplements at providing nutrition for neurological diseases, there is a place for supplementation with vitamins and minerals, provided they are taken together with food to make up for deficient nutrients in our foods.  Paul Bergner researched the decline of minerals Continue reading Useful Supplements for Parkinson’s Disease: Part 3

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Obesity and Swine Flu: A Chinese Medicine Perspective

Flu virus diagramA recent report report from the Center for Infectious Disease Research and Policy indicates that 25% of hospitalized H1N1 victims in a California study were morbidly obese versus 4% of the US population and more than half were obese.  It did not collect data on whether the heavy patients had other underlying conditions although the analysis found that probable. Now the question is, is obesity an independent risk factor or a proxy for other conditions that make flu infection worse? Continue reading Obesity and Swine Flu: A Chinese Medicine Perspective

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The China Study Misrepresents Data: Does Not Support a Vegan Diet.

Chinese eating T. Colin Campbell came out with his book, The China Study which purports to be the most comprehensive study of diet and disease. However Campbell is so intent on promoting a vegan data that he misrepresents the data in the real China Study and cherry picks anti-animal food data. The book distorts the data generated by Junshi Chen in Mortality, Biochemistry, Diet and Lifestyle in Rural China and in no way supports Campbell’s subtitle “The Most Comprehensive Study of Nutrition Ever Conducted and the Startling Implications for Diet, Weight Loss and Long-term Health” or his thesis that a vegan diet is superior. Continue reading The China Study Misrepresents Data: Does Not Support a Vegan Diet.

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Vitamin D During Pregnancy Reduces Pre-Eclampsia

pregnant-ladySeveral studies in different parts of the world have shown that there is a benefit to a baby when the mother takes Vitamin D in excess of the amount in prenatal vitamins.  This shows that there is a benefit to pregnant mothers in reducing the complications of pregnancy.  While the study only looked at a fairly low dose of Vitamin D, probably from cod liver oil and diet, it indicates that supplementation reduced pre-eclampsia by 25%.   Based upon Finish  studies,  I wonder how much less pre-eclampsia would be found if blood levels were raised to 50.    Continue reading Vitamin D During Pregnancy Reduces Pre-Eclampsia

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Don’t Use Echinacea for This Season’s Flu

echinaceaIt looks like last year’s rather mild flu may turn more virulent this season.  It already is killing large numbers of people in unusual ways, especially those of Asian or Native American descent.  The most vulnerable seem to be not the aged or the young, but healthy young adults.  And it has killed people during the summer, a time when influenza deaths are all but unheard of. The 1918 flu pandemic which killed millions worldwide started out mild too.

If the flu acts like the 1918 pandemic, it will cause a cytokine storm, where your immune system can overreact, rapidly killing you.  In cases like this you do not want to use immune system stimulants like echinacea.  You are better off with Vitamin D and immune modulators which will not hype up your system if you don’t need it. Continue reading Don’t Use Echinacea for This Season’s Flu

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Vitamin D, Statins and Red Yeast Rice

red-yeast-rice-300x238As those of you who read my blog are aware, I am not a big fan of statins.  The first reason is that cholesterol is not really the problem. The second is that statins depress the body’s own anti-inflammatory compound CoQ10.  But recent research shows that, against our logical assumptions, Vitamin D levels may rise when statins are taken. Continue reading Vitamin D, Statins and Red Yeast Rice

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Vitamin D Regulates the Immune System

I am an herbalist, and that is where I turn first, in most cases.  But Vitamin D is an exception.  It is a hormone used by most of our cells in over 2000 functions,.  As humans ranged north of the African savannah where we evolved and started wearing more clothing, we started lowering our D levels.

Vitamin D
Vitamin D

Vitamin D has the ability to kill off bacteria and that property has been so important that we have retained that property as primates for over 60 million years

Vitamin D  also prevents the over stimulation of our immune system which could cause it to attack ourselves.  This is important for the Swine Flu which can be dangerous if there is an excessive inflammatory response, called a cytokine storm.

Most deaths in the 1918 flu pandemic and more recently from SARS, happened when young healthy people who had a strong immune response provoked a cytokine storm which allowed an excessive response that quickly killed them off.  We speculate that with higher levels of Vitamin D, the regulatory function that caused the excessive inflammation might not have occurred.

This article tells how the process works, but the takeaway is to keep your Vitamin D levels high (blood level around 60) which may require 10,000 iu or more daily and if you get the flu increase it.  Continue reading Vitamin D Regulates the Immune System

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Nursing Mothers, Infants and Vitamin D

While I used to think otherwise, I firmly believe that nursing mothers should supplement both themselves and their babies with Vitamin D.  The exceptions to this are mothers who live south of Atlanta, who Breastfeedingtogether with their babies are out of doors without sunscreen between 11:00 am and 1:00pm and who don’t use soap when they wash (because it washes away the D2 oil involved in the process of making D3.)  We used to have government programs to encourage parents to take children out into the sun.   See this informative and entertaining video from UCSD.

In Finland, babies were routinely given cod liver oil providing 4500 iu of D (and modern cod liver oil is NOT recommended for it due to lower D/A ratios).  Then, since research showed that rickets could be  prevented at 400 iu, the recommended daily amount was lowered.  As a result, Type 1 Diabetes skyrocketed.  We have very good data showing that 90% of Type 1 Childhood Diabetes can be eliminated by Vitamin D supplementation.

Continue reading Nursing Mothers, Infants and Vitamin D

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How To Get Vitamin D from the Sun

How do you get enough Vitamin D from the sun?  If you can fulfill the following, you might get enough:vitamin-d

  1. You live south of Atlanta in the winter.
  2. You are in the sun from 11:00 am to 1:00 pm.
  3. Your body is mostly uncovered.
  4. You go without sunscreen for at least 15-20 minutes.
  5. You don’t use soap for 48 hours.
  6. You repeat the process in 72 hours.
  7. Your skin is not dark, either from genetics or suntanning. (You may need six times as much exposure if your skin is dark.)

Unless you fit all of these conditions, you need to supplement.  And a multi-vitamin or calcium plus D supplement will NOT have enough Vitamin D, nor will your milk.  You need to supplement with high iu Vitamin D3, preferably above 4000 iu.  If your blood 25 hydroxy D test is below 70 (ignore “high”, “medium” and “low” because that is based on the averages of a D-deficient population,) then supplement it.  The exception is if you have scleroderma or similar abnormal calcium metabolism.

Other ways to supplement:  frequent consumption of liver, preferably from organic animals.  Shitake or other mushrooms dried gill side up in the sun on a daily dose of about one ounce dry weight, cooked long and low.

Calculations from studies on Vitamin D show that, for every person who dies of skin cancer from UV overexposure, more than two hundred will die from other cancers, like lung, breast, prostate and colon, as a result of low vitamin D levels.

See Related Posts:

Vitamin D Regulates the Immune System

Nursing Mothers, Infants and Vitamin D

And More On Vitamin D

Vitamin D Prevents Cancer, Type 1 Diabetes, MS, Heart Attack and Pain

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And more on Vitamin D

This is a very funny and informative video on Vitamin D, with images that will stick with you.  (I especially liked his publication strategy to get new patients.)

  • Infant chimps, which we have already seen need similar Vitamin D to humans can take 5000 iu per day.
  • Collagen without sufficient Vitamin D is like putting Jello in water- it gets softer and can’t support the bones.
  • Iguana owners have a better idea of Vitamin D needs than most doctors. (And the pictures of Vitamin D deficient iguanas will stick with you.)
  • Vitamin D is responsible for regulating the blood pressure hormone rennin, and for combating elevated levels of C-reactive protein in your body.
  • Malignant melanoma usually appears in areas without exposure to sun, and working out of doors lowers your malignant melanoma rate.
  • Squamous cell skin cancer is the only cancer that occurs more in sunbathers, the ones that will kill you are lower.
  • Vitamin D toxicity occurred in a Florida lawyer who was taking 1 million iu of Vitamin D for two years due to a manufacturing accident.  When they gave him a diuretic and kept him out of the sun for a month, it reversed.
  • While tanning bed enthusiasts get more cancer, they also have higher bone density.

Lots more and hard information:

See Related Posts:

Vitamin D Regulates the Immune System

Nursing Mothers, Infants and Vitamin D

How to Get Vitamin D from the Sun

Vitamin D Prevents Cancer, Type 1 Diabetes, MS, Heart Attack and Pain

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Vitamin D Prevents Cancer, Type 1 Diabetes, MS, Heart Attack and Pain

Watching this You-Tube video from the University of California at San Diego might be one of the best things you can do for your health. It explains clearly and in detail which levels of vitamin D3 are necessary to prevent a great variety of diseases. Rickets, the disease our woefully inadequate RDA was designed to prevent, needs very little Vitamin D.    Cancers, diabetes, heart attack, falls, fractures, hypertension, neurological impairment, even pain will be prevented by raising your blood Vitamin D levels to the recommended range.

I have been taking 10,000 iu of Vitamin D3 daily for the last year and am only in the low end of the recommended range.

You can find the charts shown in the video at http://www.grassrootshealth.net

A blood level of Vitamin D (have your doctor test it) should be 40-60 ng/ml, which is likely higher than the reference range of the test. You would need to reach 200 ng/ml to suffer from toxicity. The amount you need to supplement will vary, but is way way higher than you find in any multi.  Unless you seek out a special high concentration vitamin D supplement, you are not getting enough, at least above the Mason-Dixon line (and usually below as well.)

This video puts together the Vitamin D research and offers a public health program designe Continue reading Vitamin D Prevents Cancer, Type 1 Diabetes, MS, Heart Attack and Pain

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Which Came First, the Egg or Omega 3 Egg?

Many people think that eggs should not be eaten, based on the erroneous assumption that they might cause cholesterol.  Your body makes its cholesterol- even vegans get high cholesterol- and reducing carbohydrates that stimulate insulin will actually lower cholesterol better than not eating eggs.  This is why I suggest wild salmon and omega 3 eggs.  Read what Susan Allport has to say about the difference in nutrition between eggs from chickens who range freely and conventional eggs:

Of Chickens, Eggs, and Omega-3s

Eggs were once a much more healthful food. And they can be again.
by Susan Allport originally published Monday, December 17, 2007

Which came first: the egg or the omega-3 enriched egg?Chicken and egg

The omega-3 enriched egg, of course, since all eggs used to be full of omega-3s when the chickens that laid them foraged for a living, scratching and pecking in backyards and farms.

Continue reading Which Came First, the Egg or Omega 3 Egg?

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Sun Exposure Inadequate for Vitamin D

I have been recommending for some time now that people not rely upon sun for all levels of Vitamin D.  Sunshine is quite wonderful for you, despite what the dermatologists and cosmetic salespeople tell you, so long as you are sensible about exposure.  But as the story below tells you, it isn’t enough for your Vitamin D requirements.Sun

Most of us live far too north to get the proper light intensity  or the correct angle of the rays needed to produce Vitamin D.  Virtually all makeup and most skin creams have a SPF blocking free access to sunlight.  And very few of us are willing to foreswear soap for 48-72 hours after sun exposure in order to allow the Vitamin D conversion.  Our food no longer has much since animals are fed indoors on grain instead of growing grass and herbs.  And frankly the levels we need are too high without supplementation. Continue reading Sun Exposure Inadequate for Vitamin D

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