Are you deficient in vitamin -D and your Doctor has prescribed you vitamin D supplement? You are worried about taking supplements and doubt if it is safe ? its natural we generally dont like to take supplements to improve our health. If you are deficient in vitamin -D it is important to first understand what is leading to your vitamin -D Deficiency.
Your Doctor would have recommended Vitamin-D supplementation or Sun - Exposure but let us understand why is it very important to have optimum levels of vitamin-D to control Diabetes?
Why vitamin D Levels are important for all the Diabetics?
- Vitamin –D Deficiency leads to decrease of insulin secretion by 48%.
- Vitamin D Deficiency is also linked to Type 1 diabetes
- It is also proven that supplementing recently diagnosed type-1 diabetic with vitamin D will help to prevent further loss of beta-cells
- Vitamin D directly acts on insulin producing cells in the pancreas to produce more insulin.
- Vitamin D directly acts on the muscle and fat cells to improve insulin action by reducing insulin resistance.
- Vitamin D reduces inflammation which is commonly present in patients with Insulin Resistance Syndrome and Type 2 diabetes.
- Vitamin D indirectly improves insulin production and its action by improving the level of calcium inside
- Not just facts there is a real evidence to prove the importance of Vitamin-D in Diabetics.
- In a study (12), researchers from Helsinki, Finland collected health data in men and women from the ages of 40 to 74. None of these individual had Type 2 diabetes at the start of the study. They followed these individuals for 22 years to see the pattern of development of Type 2 diabetes.
- Some people take supplements for calcium defeciency but their calcium levels do not increase and they suffer with weak bones, Vitamin-D is important for absorption of calcium from intestines.
Will taking supplements quickly raise my vitamin-d levels? Yes by taking supplements you can increase your vitamin D levels quickly. but the answer to this question is not so simple. I will answer your question in bits and pieces.
Before understanding how to increase your vitamin -D levels quickly let us see how is vitamin-D produced in our body. see the video below
Why am I deficient in vitamin D?
- Your body is not exposed to Sun enough. this is the primary reason for vitamin-D deficiency .
- Some of you go into sun but all your body parts are protected with clothes.
- You go into sun but avoid going into sun from 10:00 am to 02:00 pm, UVB Rays are highest during this time, if you are able to expose your body to sun for 10 minutes a day during this time you will not have vitamin D deficiency.
- You may be using sunscreens / cover your body totally.
- Most of us are living in Apartments which do not allow sunlight to enter into our houses, At home we can wear less clothes and receive more sun- exposure.
- Because you dont have enough exposure to UV-B Rays
What are the symptoms of vitamin D Deficiency?
- Whole body pains (muscle), ( do you complain about body pains all the time?) .
- You feel tired most of the time .
- Frequent infections due to weakened immune system due to lack of vitamin-D.
- Some people may not have any symptoms.
- Body pains, tiredness & frequent infections.
What is the test to determine Vitamin D levels in our body?
- 25 hydroxy vitamin D test. ( Dr.Sarfraz Zaidi explains why is this more accurate & relevant )
- This is the most active form of vitamin D which can be used by the body readily.
- Some labs in India are testing your vitamin D3 levels, which is not much significant.
- So ask for 25 hydroxy vitamin D test.
What should be my vitamin D Levels?
- There are several fundas about vitamin D, But I will just let you know what the most respected Holistic health experts say about it.
- Dr. Mercola recommends 25 hydroxy vitamin D levels should be higher than 50 ng/ml.
- Dr. sarfaraj Zaidi in his book " The Power of Vitamin D" mentions normal range for vitamin D is 30-100 ng/ml.
- Precision nutrition mentions it should not be more than 40 ng/ml.
- Your vitamin D levels should be > 40 ng/ml.
What are natural sources of Vitamin D?
- Rich source of vitamin D is Exposure to Sun. Few foods contain vitamin D3 in them but they contain very small quantities of vitamin D.
- Milk, Egg yolk, Curd & Fatty Fish have small amounts of vitamin-D which cannot replace your need for Sun exposure or Vitamin-D supplementation. .
- Exposure to Sun.
What can deplete Vitamin D?
- foods rich in phytates like whole grains, nuts, seeds and legumes & oxalates which are plenty in dark green leafy vegetables
- if you are person who eats more of the above mentioned foods you have to try balancing by limiting the foods above adding more variety into your diet.
- Excess of Green leafy vegetables, Whole grains, nuts & legumes etc.
What are other vitamins and minerals which are required for vitamin D?
- Magnesium, Vitamin K, Zinc, Boron and Vitamin A are required for vitamin D to do its work, So If you are deficient in vitamin-D, you should ensure you take enough of above vitamins.
- Foods rich in magnesium & zinc are Spinach, pumpkin seeds, curd, Almonds & dark chocolate.
- Foods rich in Vitamin-K are Cabbage, Cauliflower, curd & cucumber etc.
- Foods rich in Boron are chickpeas, almonds, beans, vegetables, bananas, walnuts, avocado , broccoli , apples & raisins
- Foods rich in Vitamin -A are carrots, Eggs, sweet potato, Spinach and Broccoli.
- If you are take vitamin -D supplement, eat this following foods
- Spinach, cauliflower, curd, carrots & pumpkin seeds.
What is the right time to get more vitamin D?
- Dr. Mercola says from a health perspective it doesn't make much sense to expose your skin to the sun when it is lower than 50 degrees It is very important!
- You will receive more vitamin D if you stand in Sun at 01:30 pm, but the problem is there are are abundant UV-A rays which are very harmful.
- So expose yourself to sun in between 09:00 am to 10:00 am for 15 minutes in Summer and 10:30 am to 11:30 pm in winter.
- If you want to exactly know what is the best time to get more vitamin-D, you can install this Android app - UVIMATE. it can guide you about the level of UV rays in your place, see the screen shot below.
- 09:00 am to 10:00 am in Summer and 10:30 am to 11:30 pm in winter
Diabetologist & Preventive Cardiologist
Geriatrician & Life Style Medicine Specialist
8984008191 / 0674-2544999
I can tell you from my vast clinical practice experience that definitely by supplementing a person with Vitamin D3 at adequate doses, it reduces the blood sugar, blood pressure, cholesterol, and also aids in reducing body weight and above all gives a sense of overall wellbeing.
Many of my patience reported a decrease in swelling of legs / bone pain/ shortness of breath, improved wound healing & gut motility etc after taking Vitamin D3 supplements as per my advice.
As study says that not only patients but more than 90% people are deficient in Vitamin D3 and this is the reason I advocate Vitamin D3 supplementation in all my patients.
FAQ'S ON VITAMIN-D
Are Vitamin-D Supplements necessary?
They are necessary if your vitamin-D levels are lower than 10 ng/ml and you are not able to get enough sun exposure.
Are Vitamin-D these Supplements safe?
Yes they are safe, if used under controlled dosages and proper guidance.
How much dosage is recommended?
5000 IU / day if your vitamin-D levels are lower than 10 ng/ml and you are obese.
3000 IU / day if your vitamin-D levels are lower than 10 ng/ml and you are overweight.
2000 IU / day if your vitamin-D levels are lower than 10 ng/ml and you are normal weight
Alternately you can also take the supplement weekly / once in 3 days etc.
Can I get Vitamin-D from Diet?
Yes foods sources like Egg Yolk, Milk, Mushrooms and Fatty fish contain Vitamin -d3, But in very low quantities, so It is important to have sun-exposure or supplementation.
Before I tell you about brand, it is important to understand that your should choose vitamin-D3 Supplement, dont go for vitamin -d2 supplements because they are less bio-active. I recommend Inlife - Vitamin -D3 ( Cholcalciferol ) supplement.
How long should I use the supplement?
What time should I take the supplement?
After Lunch is the best time, Don take it in the night because it will interfere with your sleep.
Are there any side effects of taking Vitamin-D Supplements?
No, There are no side effects on moderate dosages. It is being observed that there may be some side effects at very high dosage of above 20,000 IU /day.
I recommend this supplement if you are deficient in vitamin-D and overweight
TAKE this once in 2 days
Best way to increase vitamin-D levels quickly is through supplements, But for the long run I recommend you to get your vitamin-D from Sun- Exposure. If you live in a place where sunshine is less you may have to go with supplements combined with sun exposure.
Luckily In India we have enough Sunshine, If you can ensure to get exposed to Sun at least 2 hours / week you will not be deficient in Vitamin-D.
If you have any doubts, comment below, please share this across if you like this information.
Founder- Healthy Diet For Diabetics