Posts Tagged ‘vitamin D’

Getting the Optimal Levels of Vitamin D

Thursday, February 25th, 2010

Measuring Your Vitamin D Status

The only true way to know your vitamin D status, and therefore your proper daily dose, is with a blood test, in which the metabolically-active form of vitamin D, 25-hydroxvitamin D (25-OH-D, or calcidiol) is measured. Relatively recently (over the past 5 to 7 years) when vitamin D’s role in the prevention of degenerative diseases beyond prevention of osteoporosis was recognized, the medical experts recommended a minimum target blood level of 30 ng/ml of 25-hydroxyvitamin D. (I emphasize that “minimum target level” means just that, “minimum!” It does not mean “optimal.”) Therefore, the reference lab ranges was raised to 32 – 100 ng/ml. Most experts in the field of researching and treating vitamin D deficiencies have recommended that “optimal” serum 25-OH-D levels begin at 42 ng/ml, with the ideal target range being achieved between 50 – 80 ng/ml.

What Dose of Vitamin D is Optimal?

The vitamin D dose required to attain a serum level range of 50 – 80 ng/ml will vary from person to person, mostly based upon body mass (weight) and sun exposure. Although this will vary considerably, a 150 lb person who supplements with 2000 IU of vitamin D per day may attain blood level range of 25-OH-D between 30 and 45 ng/ml, depending upon sun exposure. To attain the optimal levels between 50 and 80 ng/ml that same person may need to supplement with 4000 IU per day or more.

On the other hand, a person who weighs 225 lbs. may require 10,000 IU/day to maintain 25-hydroxy vitamin D blood serum levels between 50 and 80 ng/ml. In all instances, the only way to accurately know the “true daily dosage” for a particular person would be to first estimate a starting vitamin D dose, get a serum 25-OH vitamin D test; adjust the dose accordingly, and get re-tested several weeks later.


For more information, read my full article on vitamin D, “D Day: An All-Out Assault on Chronic Disease with Vitamin D” on www.laddmcnamara.com under the “In the News” section.

Vitamins and Minerals Help Maintain a Healthy Blood Pressure

Friday, December 11th, 2009

About 10 days ago, I went to my doctor for a check up, the nurse took my blood pressure; “146/96,” she said. (I thought, “She’s wrong. I’ll just have the doctor re-take it when he gets in here.”) “Hey Phil, your nurse got too high of a reading on me. I don’t have high blood pressure. I think she let the mercury drop too fast, so she didn’t get an accurate reading. I’ve never had high blood pressure.” “Maybe it was because it was the nurse that made your blood pressure rise,” he said with a smile. “Take it again, Phil.” The doctor obliged.

“Ladd, I just got 166/94; you have an auscultatory gap that starts at 166, drops off, and picks back up around 144. The nurse didn’t hear the higher number, but yeah, you got high blood pressure; but, I’m not going to treat it. ”

“You’re darn right, you’re not going to treat it! I DON’T have high blood pressure! I take the BEST Nutritionals in the world, you know that, and I know what they do! Take it again!” I insisted.

“Ladd, you’re upset ….if we take it now, it will be over 200; do you want that? And, if you dropped a few pounds …” “Hey, I just started to drop some pounds …again, and I just started back with my exercise program as well. I take my nutritionals faithfully, I don’t take prescription drugs, AND, I DON’T have high blood pressure! We’re going to talk about something else for a few minutes, and then you’re going to take it again, and then I’ll prove to you that my resting blood pressure is just fine.”

Two minutes later: “128/74 …. Ladd, that’s great. Wow, what a difference! You’re fine!?!” The nurse comes in, “I didn’t think a man of your size and age would ….oh, ..I mean, … well, …yeah, …you’re blood pressure looks great (forced smile), …that’s great.” (I smiled back) Very light-heartedly I said, “Hey, I’ll be back in 3 months, and you’ll see even more evidence on the labs and the scale of just what true health the best nutritionals in the world can provide!”

Here are just a few nutrients that help maintain a healhty blood pressure (along with maintaining a healthy weight, exercise, and a proper diet):

MAGNESIUM:
Extensive research has shown that magnesium is essential to maintain a healthy blood pressure. The National Institutes of Health have recognized magnesium’s critical role in supporting cardiovascular function. Because magnesium is not always plentiful in our foods, and we don’t always eat correctly, supplementation may be the most effective way to maintain a healthy blood pressure. Eur J Public Health. 2004 Sept;14(3):235-9 Circulation. 1989;80(5):1320-7 Drugs Exp Clin Res. 1978;4:49-53

The recommended intake of magnesium to maintain vascular health is 400 to 1000 mg/day (consider at least 400 mg).

alpha Lipoic Acid (ALA) and N-Acetyl-L-Cysteine (NAC):
ALA with magnesium is able to help maintain a healthy blood pressure, even among diabetics. This occurs because these nutrients all increase glutathione levels, which protect bio-mechanisms that regulate arterial tone. ALA with acetyl-L-carnitine help maintain blood pressure. J Clin Hypertens.(Greenwich.). 2007 Apr;9(4):249-55. Hypertension 2002 Feb;39(2):303-307 Eur J Pharmacol 2001 Jul;20;424(2):121-129 Journal of Hypertension 2000, Vol 18, Iss 5, pp 567-573

QUERCETIN:
Studies have demonstrated the ability of the bioflavanoid antioxidant, quercetin to help maintain a healthy blood pressure. High blood pressure is a well-known risk factor for heart attack and stroke.
J Nutr. 2007 Nov;137(11):2405-11 Br J Pharmacol 2001 133:117-24 Curr Opin Clin Nutr Metab Care. 2008 Nov;11(6):733-40

GRAPE SEED EXTRACT:
Polyphenol antioxidants from grape seed extract of at least 180 mg/day (and possibly from other sources, such as the olive extract) also helps to maintain a healthy blood pressure. Siva B, et. al, Effect of polyphenolics extracts of grape seeds (GSE) on blood pressure (BP) in patients with metabolic syndrome (MetS). FASEB. 2006;San Francisco, CA. Clin Sci (Lond). 2004 Nov;107(5):513-7

Co-Enzyme Q10:
Co-Enzyme Q10 provides a myriad of health benefits, including helping to maintain a healthy blood pressure when taken at the level of at least 100 mg/day, …sometimes requiring 200 mg/day. Mol Aspects Med. 1994;15(Suppl):S265-72 J Hum Hypertens. 1999 Mar;13(3):203-8 Mol Aspects Med. 1994;15(Suppl):S257-63

FISH OIL:
Fish Oil, in the dose of 1400 mg of EPA and 1000 mg of DHA/day is associated with maintaining a healthy blood pressure, in addition to a healthy heart. Hypertension. 2006 Feb;47(2):296-308 Circulation. 1993 Aug;88(2):523-33 N Engl J Med. 1989 Apr 20;320(16):1037-43 Clin Exp Pharmacol Physiol. 1991 May;18(5):265-8 Am J Clin Nutr. 1999 Nov;70(5):817-25

Vitamin D:
Vitaimn D deficiency contributes to high blood pressure, diabetes, and inflammation—all of which increase cardiovascular risk. Vitamin D3 in the dose of 1000 to 6000 IU per day (and higher for some people) helps to maintain a healthy blood pressure. Arch Intern Med. 2007 Jun 11;167(11):1159-65 J Nutr. 2005 Nov;135(11):2739S-48S J Steroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2005 Jun;96(1):59-66 J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2001 Apr;86(4):1633-7 Am J Hypertens. 1995 Sep;8(9):894-901 J Cell Biochem. 2003 Feb 1;88(2):327-31

Vitamin C:
Vitamin C at the dose of at least 1000 mg per day (preferrably higher) may help maintain a healthy blood pressure. J Hypertension, 2000, Vol 18, Iss 4, pp 411-415 Epidemiology. 1992;3:194-202 Lancet. 1999;354(9195):355-64 Circulation. 1998;97:2222-9

Of course, all these nutrients provide multiple health benefits besides helping to maintain a healthy blood pressure!

How Much Vitamin D is Too Much?

Thursday, December 4th, 2008

I get this question all the time, because vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin.  If you have not already done so, please go to the “In the News” section of this website and please read my article on vitamin D.   That should answer this question adequately. 

Although vitamin D is fat soluble the level that has been shown to be very effective in maintaining health (decreasing the risk of heart disease and cancer) is between 1000 and 10,000 IU.   Vitamin D also helps with many other health situations as well.  As I mentioned in my article, vitamin D does not seem to approach toxic levels until you consume 50,000 IU per day or more.  That is why I suggest one does not supplement with more than 10,000 IU of vitamin D per day …unless instructed by their own physician.

Personally, I take 5000 IU of vitamin D per day, and I advocate that every adult consider taking at least 1000 to 2000 IU per day.  (Children can safely take 400 to 1000 IU per day; however, one needs to discuss supplementation with their physician …a physician who is keenly aware of the benefits and high safety level of vitamin D.)