Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin that is used to keep blood levels of calcium and
phosphorous normal in the body. The normal level for vitamin D in the body is 30-100ng/ml.
Our goal is have levels between 60-80ng/ml. A value below 20ng/ml is considered deficient.
Low vitamin D can lead to osteoporosis and increase the risk for bone fractures. Low levels of
vitamin D have also been associated with chronic pain, including leg, back, bone, and muscle
pain. Symptoms of chronic pain may improve after vitamin D levels are back to normal.
Vitamin D levels should be monitored about every 3-4 months. Checking vitamin D levels may be helpful if you have chronic pain to see if taking a supplement could be an option. Vitamin D supplements are available either over-the-counter or by prescription depending on the
severity of deficiency.
Research supporting vitamin D supplementation has increased dramatically over the past decade and has significantly revitalized interest in this important nutrient. While in the past, vitamin D was recognized mainly for its role in bone health, recent epidemiological and randomized-controlled trials have uncovered relationships between low levels of vitamin D and a number of chronic conditions, including muscle pain and weakness, autoimmune diseases such as type 1 diabetes, colorectal cancer, cardiovascular disease, inflammatory bowel disease, and multiple sclerosis. These significant and widespread findings have prompted new controversy in defining “optimal” serum levels of vitamin D, as well as the doses needed to achieve them.
Many U.S. experts consider 30 ng/mL (75 nmol/L) 25(OH)D to be an optimal of vitamin D, such as Michael Holick, one of the world’s leading researchers on vitamin D, who agrees that 30 ng/mL (75 nmol/L) “is required to maximize vitamin D’s beneficial effects for health.”
There are many studies using 50,000 IU and more of vitamin D3 as a loading dose or intermittently (weekly, monthly, etc). These studies show that patients who are severely deficient in vitamin D can often times reach optimal vitamin D levels with high dose vitamin D3 therapy.