About two years ago, our doctor started going a little obsessive on the Vitamin D talk saying both my husband and I were not high enough on our levels.
Around the same time, I started seeing article after article on the subject. There was talk about how the increase in sun screen (due to the increase in Melanoma due to the decrease in the ozone layer etc.) was preventing the D from getting in through our largest organ–the skin.
So what’s the answer? I started adding in large amounts of Vitamin D (5,000 mg daily), and we live in sun country where I don’t always remember my sunscreen (I know, I know) or opt for the organic ones that don’t always screen, but to this day my D is barely over the 50 limit. At least now, I don’t get frowny faces on my lab reports, but I still feel like a Vitamin D underachiever. I need to keep an eye on it.
Because of my own Vitamin D complex, I perk up when research comes across on this subject. Last week in the Wall Street Journal, an article entitled, “Multiple Sclerosis Linked to Vitamin D Levels, Study Says” discusses a study in Sweden that found low levels of Vitamin D in women correlated to the development of MS. Yikes!
I’m not one to toss all my eggs into the latest study basket, but here’s my advice.
1. Find out what your Vitamin D level is via that dreaded blood test you get every year for your physical. Your doc will tell you where you fall, but generally you should be above 50. There is general concern that across the boards these levels are low as we spend less time outdoors.
2. It’s hard to get the amount of Vitamin D you need from food. Talk to your doc about supplementing with over the counter vitamins. Know the size amount before you go. There’s about a hundred choices.
3. Know that low levels of Vitamin D are believed to increase risks for the following: chronic health problems, including diabetes and heart disease, various cancers–and now MS.
Turns out our Vitamin D-obsessed doctor was doing a good job. Make sure to check with your doctor and ask about your levels in case nobody’s brought it up.