View Full Version : Sign up for CHEAP vit. D testing and be part of a study with impact!!!

Garrett Smith
01-06-2009, 02:21 PM

$30 for vitamin D testing is CHEAP. I'm suggesting this to all of my patients.

A Consortium of Scientists, Institutions and Individuals Committed to Solving the Worldwide Vitamin D Deficiency Epidemic

Scientists are calling for a standard vitamin D intake of 2000 IU/day and the achievement of a serum level of 40-60 ng/ml. Scientists' Call to Action.

GrassrootsHealth has launched a worldwide public health campaign to solve the vitamin D deficiency epidemic in a year through a focus on testing and education with all individuals spreading the word.

Everyone is invited to join in this campaign! Join Daction and test two times per year during a 5 year program to demonstrate the public health impact of this nutrient.

$30.00 and a quick health survey allows everyone to

get a vitamin D blood spot test kit to be used at home (except in the state of New York)
have the results sent directly to them
take action to adjust their own levels to get to the desired ranges with whatever help is needed from their healthcare practitioners.

With only 100 people joining up today, and getting 2 friends to join in 2 weeks (and those 2 friends getting 2 more), by week 42, there could be 400,000,000 people who are vitamin D ‘replete’! (more than the United States population)

Garrett Smith
01-06-2009, 02:41 PM
More about conventional docs changing their stance on vitamin D supplementation:
Heart Helper Inspired by Studies, Doctors Prescribing Higher Doses of Vitamin D

The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel


It could be a couple of years before formal recommendations are established for taking higher doses of vitamin D as a way to help prevent or treat heart disease, but some doctors aren't waiting.

This month, doctors at Aurora Sinai Medical Center in Milwaukee began giving a mega-dose of 100,000 international units of vitamin D to all patients with chest pains. After that, they are advised to take 2,000 IU a day, said John Whitcomb, an emergency room physician with the hospital.

Other Aurora hospitals are considering doing the same thing, he said.

Given that the current recommendation for adults is 600 IU a day, that's a considerable departure from the norm, although 2,000 IU a day is considered to be safe for adults.

More and more studies are linking vitamin D deficiency, which is common in large segments of the U.S. population, especially in the winter, to increased risk of heart disease and other ailments.

This month, a review article in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology came to a similar conclusion.

It said heart patients who have insufficient vitamin D levels should be treated with one dose of 50,000 IU a week for eight weeks. Pills of 50,000 IU generally are available only as a prescription. After eight weeks, patients can take 50,000 IU every two weeks, or 1,000 to 2,000 IU a day.

The authors recommended vitamin D3, which can be found over the counter at drugstores.

"Vitamin D supplementation is simple, safe and inexpensive," the authors wrote.

Outdated guidelines?

James O'Keefe, co-author of the study and a cardiologist at the Mid America Heart Institute in Kansas City, Mo., said the recommended amounts of vitamin D were established decades ago, when people spent more time outdoors.

Vitamin D is made in the skin when it is exposed to ultraviolet light. It is difficult to get adequate levels from food sources.

"There is a growing chorus from around the world that the (recommended daily allowance) is way too low," said O'Keefe, who also is a professor of medicine at the University of Missouri- Kansas City.

An inexpensive blood test measures vitamin D levels. Many experts say levels between 21 and 29 nanograms per deciliter are insufficient, and levels less than 21 are deficient.

In Wisconsin, wintertime vitamin D levels appear to be low, according to a research article this year.

The study involved a sample of 71 women ages 70 and older whose vitamin D levels were measured between the winter of 2005 and the spring of 2006 in Madison.

The study found that 59% of the women had vitamin D levels of less than 30 ng/dl.

Several observational studies this year have focused on low levels of the vitamin and increased risk of heart disease:

- In a study involving 3,258 German heart patients, those in the lowest quarter for vitamin D blood levels had twice the risk of dying, especially from cardiovascular disease, compared with those in the top quarter.

- Harvard researchers studying 18,225 men found that those with vitamin D levels below 15 ng/dl were 2.4 times more likely to have a heart attack than those with levels above 30 ng/dl.

- Researchers followed 1,739 members of the Framingham Offspring Study for more than five years and found the rate of cardiovascular disease "events" such as heart attacks, strokes and heart failure was 53% to 80% higher in people with low levels of vitamin D in their blood.

All those studies were observational. What's needed, experts say, are clinical trials.

'Cheapest medicine'

In the meantime, Whitcomb, of Aurora Sinai, said many doctors in the Aurora health care system will be recommending vitamin D.

He noted that vitamin D is made in the cells of most living organisms. The vitamin is a hormone that can act on as many as 200 genes.

"This is life's most fundamental hormone," Whitcomb said. "It's the cheapest medicine on the planet."

Indeed, more cardiologists say they are becoming aware of the growing amount of vitamin D research.

One problem, though, is that, while studies consistently link low vitamin D levels to heart disease, there is no consensus on the best way to restore a person's vitamin D levels, said Richard Staudacher, a cardiologist with ProHealth Care Medical Associates Cardiology in Waukesha.

However, because there is little danger from taking vitamin D, Staudacher said he will be testing his patients, and those with low levels probably will be offered doses similar to those recommended in the cardiology journal article.

That would include an initial prescription dose of 50,000 IU and a maintenance dose of about 2,000 IU a day, he said.

A person's vitamin D level "is something all cardiologists should be aware of," Staudacher said.

Copyright 2008, Journal Sentinel Inc. All rights reserved. (Note: This notice does not apply to those news items already copyrighted and received through wire services or other media.)

Donald Lee
01-06-2009, 09:12 PM
I signed up. Thanks, Dr. G. I just got sick yesterday, and I was wondering if my lack of sun exposure had anything to do with it.

I have one question though. Are you required to take 2,000 IU/day, even during the summer when you get a lot of sun exposure? I ask this because for 6 weeks this summer I'll be at OCS, and they won't allow me to take any supplements and I'll be in the sun all day.

Garrett Smith
01-07-2009, 07:26 AM
If you're out in the midday sun a bunch while at OCS, I'm sure you'll be fine. If you were still concerned, you might get one of the 50,000 iu prescription D supplements mentioned in the above article and take it the day before you go to OCS, that would cover you just fine.

Gittit Shwartz
01-07-2009, 07:59 AM
Could there be a problem with taking more that 2000 IU of supplemental vit. D for a healthy patient? I'm guessing the accompanying vit. A should be the bottleneck?

I tested low on vit. D on two blood tests 3 months apart though I was taking 3 tsp of CLO a day at the time. In light of all the recent talk on vitamin A toxicity, I cut down on the CLO and started taking some plain OTC vitamin D in drops. I think I did around 10,000 IU a day in divided doses for several days and it seemed to considerably improve my sleep. I don't know for sure because that bottle ran out pretty fast...:)

sarena kopciel
01-07-2009, 08:40 AM
Hey so from what I see, this wouldnt really work for us NY residents?

Xuan Mai Ho
01-07-2009, 08:46 AM
Hey so from what I see, this wouldnt really work for us NY residents?

Apparently, according to a New York State Health Law, they can't process blood spot tests from the State of the New York.

We're SOL.

Garrett Smith
01-07-2009, 09:21 AM
I just talked to a lab yesterday about NY. It seems they have some very strange laws regarding lab testing.

If you want to do this, you might need to figure out a way to sign up where you don't "reside" in NY.

I think you'll be just fine. I have cut down the CLO dosing as well, while adding more D3. From the Vitamin D Council (http://vitamindcouncil.org/):
There are 3 ways for adults to insure adequate levels of vitamin D:
* regularly receive midday sun exposure in the late spring, summer, and early fall, exposing as much of the skin as possible.
* regularly use a sun bed (avoiding sunburn) during the colder months.
* take 5,000 IU per day for three months, then obtain a 25-hydroxyvitamin D test. Adjust your dosage so that blood levels are between 50–80 ng/mL (or 125–200 nM/L) year around.
If you noticed positive results from the 10000ius, you might want to do the loading phase recommended by the Vitamin D Council.

Donald Lee
01-09-2009, 07:47 PM
If we sign up, is there a chance we'll be a part of the placebo group?

Garrett Smith
01-10-2009, 07:44 AM
There is no placebo group. You do the test and it is correlated to your vitamin D intake, as assessed by questionnaire.

You supply your own vitamin D outside of the study.

Donald Lee
01-10-2009, 08:50 PM
Oh, I signed up for the study thinking they'd provide me with Vit D supplements.

I know this has been posted on in the past, but what are some good brands and should I follow a loading phase?

Garrett Smith
01-11-2009, 08:41 AM
See my above post. You'll have to make your own decision on that one.

As for brands of D3, I don't know of any that are better or worse.

Donald Lee
01-11-2009, 09:43 AM
Thanks, I've been pretty sick, esp. at night, and I just wasn't feeling like searching.

Donald Lee
01-31-2009, 09:43 AM
I got my Vit D results back, and I am at 35 ng/ml. I've been supplementing with 5000 IU, but I'm wondering if that's too much for me. Is it all right for me to be supplementing with that much for even a month in this sunny winter in California?

I run two days/week now, so I may get some sunlight.