VDC test kit slider
VDC-Banner-new_468
VDC test kit slider
sunfriend-banner
sperti logo 1
Text size A A A
High contrast on off

Information on the latest vitamin D news and research.

Find out more information on deficiency, supplementation, sun exposure, and how vitamin D relates to your health.

I have a question about sensitivity to Vitamin D. I have always had very low Vitamin D levels (less than 5) but also border-line high/normal serum calcium levels – not enough to flag on a blood test but the very top end of the normal range. For 2 months I took a D3 supplement on it's own as my doctor thought it was a bad idea to take calcium alongside it with high blood calcium. I am sensitive to a lot of medications so have just been taking 2000 IU, 500% of the UK RDA and only 4 days a week. My retest after only 2 months showed a Vit D level of 67 – but my serum calcium is now at the very low range of normal. Everything I have read references the opposite effect. I have stopped taking any supplements now and am unsure what to do. Any advice would be much appreciated.

Ask the Vitamin D Council

Asked by  kelly.fellowes69345800 on June 2, 2016

Answers
  •  kelly.fellowes69345800 on

    See title

    Answered by  kelly.fellowes69345800 on

  • IAW
    Participant
     IAW on

    Please keep in mind, I am not a doctor. I would also like to know if you had any medical conditions/symptoms before taking the Vitamin D and if any of those symptoms got worse OR did you get any new symptoms? (This could affect any advice I give below.)
    The first thing is to understand that the calcium levels that they measure only represent 1% of what a human body actually uses and stores. By dealing with this Q and A, I am finding more and more doctors seem to be using these measurements to decide that you have enough of any given mineral when you may in fact not. (This goes also for the other mineral measurements for example magnesium.) Actual protocol seems to be if you have a Vitamin D level as low as yours, then HE SHOULD have told you to take calcium with it.
    So this is my take. Your calcium was “in range” before you started the D. Vitamin D helps calcium absorb into your body but only if you are ingesting enough. If you do not have enough calcium in your bloodstream (this is what a calcium test measures) then your body will pull it from your bones to keep this “homeostasis”. So baring any “symptom” information, I would start taking the D again but not until you do the following. I would read http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/about-vitamin-d/vitamin-d-and-other-vitamins-and-minerals/ and take it very seriously. I would get yourself a magnesium supplement with no less than 200mg and I would get some calcium. The best thing you could do with the calcium is look up the RDA for your gender and age, then add up what is approximately in your diet and take the difference in a supplement. I am now worried that you may start to have HYPOcalcemia. (I have been telling people at least 500 but I think Dr. Cannell once told someone to take 800.)
    Now the VDC recommends you maintain a healthy level of 50ng/ml (125nmol/l as measured in the UK) but let’s fix these issues and let me know about your symptoms before you even try more Vitamin D!!!

    Answered by  IAW on
  •  kelly.fellowes69345800 on

    Thank you for your response. I am a 35 year old female with no pre-existing health conditions, I take no medications or other supplements and I have had no obvious symptoms of low Vitamin D (bone profile blood tests all normal and no mental symptoms). I am pale skinned and fair haired and burn easily in the sun. I felt no different at a Vitamin D level of 67 than I did at 5 (barring a small increase in sex drive) and have also suffered no discernible symptoms of high or low calcium. I am concerned about the pendulum effect and how quickly it occurred at a relatively small dose of Vitamin D (working out at approximately 1000 IU per day). I dread to think what would have happened if I had taken the 20,000 IU every other day as prescribed. I’d like to understand why low Vit D is causing high calcium and a healthy vitamin D is causing low calcium and if this means the supplements have an increased effect on me or if I might have an underlying problem. 800mg is the UK RDA for calcium and I get roughly 300mg in Milk but eat no other dairy. I am not sure if taking 100% RDA of Vit D and 66% calcium (as the doctor now suggests) might still push my Vitamin D levels up too high rather than maintain them at a healthy level that is balanced my calcium level.

    Answered by  kelly.fellowes69345800 on

  • IAW
    Participant
     IAW on

    Your starting level of 5 nmol/l equals 2.5ng/ml in the US. I am utterly surprised that you had no symptoms BUT sometimes people have no symptoms and still have Osteomalacia. You are now at 67 that equals 26ng/ml in the US. We here at the VDC promote a healthy blood level of 50ng/ml (125nmol/l). Forget the UK RDA for Vitamin D. Just like the US the RDA it is wrong and we are “fighting to change it”. (Not easy considering bureaucracies!) Any level below 40ng/ml (100nmol/l) and your risk of internal cancers rises “dramatically” and autoimmune diseases. It is a proven fact (At a higher level and your sex drive will most likely improve more.)
    Sorry I do not think that “bone profile blood work” necessarily proves your bones are OK. Since your calcium levels dropped though, I think the VItamin D is now sending the calcium to your bone and Vitamin K helps send it there. Congradulations this is what it is suppose to do but since you do not have enough calcium in your diet your blood levels are now going lower. (This could be the underlying issue.)
    So in reality your Vitamin D levels need to be higher if you would like to avoid cancers but if you do not supplement with calcium, I fear you will start to have symptoms of low calcium. (Same for magnsium!)
    So 2000 every four days does not equate to 1000 it equates to 285iu a day (2000/7=285iu). So since you respond well how about taking the 2000iu everyday BUT I cannot guarantee that this will get you to the healthy level of 100nmol/l. That may take 3-4000iu a day. How much do you weigh? You can also do1000iu for every 25 lbs of body weight. The upper limit on the US Vitamin D blood test is 100ng/ml (250nmol/l)
    So in sense you have it backwords. Your Vitamin D levels need to be higher and you need to match the calcium to it. The RDA for your age here in the US is 1000mg. (Now you get to pick between those two!)
    So I hope I explained things well enough but if not ask some more questions.

    Answered by  IAW on