How Much Vitamin D Do I Need?


Have you heard all the buzz about Vitamin D? Everybody is talking about it and singing its praises. Many doctors are now checking their patients blood for Vitamin D deficiencies. My own doctor did that for me recently and suggested that I start taking supplements. This was addition to prescribing generic statins for high cholesterol in order to reduce my risks of heart disease.

But how much is too much? We have all heard that you can take too much of a vitamin and at that point becomes toxic. You don’t want to wind up with vitamin D side effects. When it comes to Vitamin D, it used to be that the warnings were not to take over 2000 IU daily so as to not have a vitamin D overdose. But the minds of many of the experts has changed in recent years so that now anything less than ten thousand daily IU is considered alright and not cause for concern of bad side effects.

I have read that high doses can cause kidney stones or kidney complications. I have had some problems with small kidney stones and tell you that’s not what you want. However, I’ve also read that it would take some doing to get too much vitamin D unless you were on a prescription level dosage.

Here’s a little more of what I’ve learned. As you may know already, the body itself produces the D vitamin through sunshine hitting the skin. What you might not know is how much is produced. Would you believe ten thousand IU’s for only twenty or thirty minutes of sun exposure? It that is the case, a person could overdose pretty quickly with just a little at the poolside. One prominent doctor suggested than it would take forty thousand IU’s a day, everyday for a long period of time to become toxic in anyway.

So what should you do? The best bet is to see your doctor and let them determine your vitamin level. Some people can be hypersensitive and there can be some rather serious complications. So I don’t know of anyone that would just recommend that you start taking as much of this vitamin as you please. Regular blood tests can monitor if you are getting too little or somehow even too much.

Generally, the more sun exposure you get the more likely you will find that you get enough vitamin D. While a half an hour of sun to whole body would cause your body to produce 10,000 IU’s of D vitamin, the body only uses about four thousand IU’s a day.

Depending on where you live and the climate, you may or may not be getting enough sun to do you good. And there may be times of the year such as in the winter when you aren’t out as much and maybe are deficient only part of the year. You can eat more foods with vitamin D, but you never know if you are getting enough. All the more reason to get in touch with your doctor and ask lots of questions. There is growing evidence and enthusiasm for the benefits of vitamin D.

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