Reply To: I have a 17 year old son who has been supplementing with Vitamin D3 without much increase in levels. He is not overweight (6 feet tall and around 150 lbs) and is not dark skinned. We live in New Mexico at the high altitude of 7,500 ft. We bought vitamin D test from the vitamin D council. He first tested April 25th with a result of 45.3. He started taking 14,000IU per day and I encouraged him to get in the sun. On July 14th, he tested again with a result of 48.2. After this test result, we switched to a VitD3/K2 supplement and increased his dosage to 20,000IU of D3 per day taken with fat (usually a spoonful of coconut cream concentrate). The K2 is 15mcg per drop and he was taking 10 drops — for the 20,000 IU of D3 and 150 mcg of K2/M7. He tested his vitamin D level a third time on October 12th with a result of 42.4. I assume that the drop in his levels are due to less sun exposure. He does not seem to be absorbing the D3 adequately from the supplement and so I hesitate to go even higher until we have explored other reasons his levels aren't increasing. I am purchasing a separate K2/M4 supplement, brand Thorne with 1mg of K2/M4 per drop. Are there any other co-factors that he might need or would aid in absorption? His only health issue is itchy feet. The severity is terrible in winter but reduces greatly in summer. The seasonal aspect is what made us think of Vitamin D, especially since many other possibilities have been eliminated (such as specific footwear, fungus, athlete's foot, food allergies, etc.). Hopefully his condition would be helped by increasing Vitamin D3 levels into the 60s and then sustaining that over the long term. Thank you for any advice you may have.
So according to the “Sunshine Calendar” if you live between 25-35 degrees latitude you can make Vitamin D all year BUT it takes “twice as long” to get the same amount as you would get in June, July and August. Florida is at this latitude also. Santa Fe, New Mexico is just slightly out of this latitude. Some things I did not mention originally were if you are trying to rely solely on Vitamin D from sunshine, you really have to expose “large amounts” of skin, not just arms and face. So please keep this in mind. Also “time of day” is very important. Between 10am and 2pm. It is not that you will not make some at other times of the day but angle of the sun is important. Do his feet “itch” right now? As for the “sun lamps”. I suspect our government has partially screwed us up when it comes to these since they consider them “dangerous”. So I have noticed that some you need to get a prescription from a doctor before they will sell you one in the USA. There are other benefits besides just UVB rays for Vitamin D production. One has to do with the release of nitric oxide. Some studies, if i remember correctly, show benefits for Multiple Sclerosis besides just Vitamin D. I think there is a connection to serotonin and/or other nuero transmitters. Unfortunately there are no studies that I know of that say how long you have to spend outside to “reap” these benefits. So I don’t think you could get all of your Vitamin D needs from a Fiji. What I have been wondering myself is if the “bulbs” are “interchangeable” or not. Meaning, for instance, could you get the Fiji and take one or two bulbs out and put the Vitamin D bulbs in it’s place. So you could make it 1/2 and 1/2 or 1/4 UVA and 3/4 UVB.