Help needed: Hi, I have just joined, I have... - Bone Health

Bone Health
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Help needed

Hi, I have just joined, I have osteoporosis and am taking alendronic acid I was also taking calcichew tablets, after a Vit D test a few months ago I was also found to have a very low level, I suspect for some time , after being prescribed a high dose tablet my levels have improved, I was told now to buy it myself , no advice given, just wondering what to do

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I suspect its down to the new NHS guideline "on over the counter medication" it's to save money obviously but if it's for certain things ie. upset tummy vitamin tablets constipation relief etc GPs can stop prescribing apparently!!! My GP hasn't as yet but I'm sure the time will come.

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What was your last D blood level and what dose of D3 were you taking?

I try to keep my blood level between 150 and 170 nmol/L. I built up to this level by taking 5000 IU 5 times a week. I was then maintaining this level by taking 2000 IU most days. I’ve been at this level, since 2014, I have never caught colds or other infections while at this level.

Unfortunately during our lovely summer I became laxed over taking the 2000 IU thinking I was getting it was sun.

When I had my blood level checked in Sep it had fallen to 105 nmol/L. Normal I know, but not optimal in my opinion.

Needless to say, I have just started with a cold! I’m now back to taking 5000 IU to build my level up.

When you take D3 remember that it’s best taken with fat, or food containing fat, I sometimes take it with a teaspoon of coconut oil.

The D3 you take one day, can take from 5 to 7 weeks to actually be available and active in your body. It’s first processed via the liver, then the kidneys.

My GP will not request D blood tests, so I arrange to have mine tested at City Hospital Birmingham, using their postal, finger prick blood collection kit. It costs about £27. Email: vitd@cityassays.org.uk

I check my level at least twice a year. I phone them on 0121 507 4278. To arrange and pay for the test.

They are very helpful.

For more information see: vitdtest.org.uk

I’m presently buying the Drs Best brand of D3 via internet, from Bodykind. They are. U.K. firm and I’ve found them to be reliable.

Best wishes

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I would query with the surgery whether the prescription should have been stopped, as GPs are allowed to continue prescribing over the counter medicines for long-term conditions. Although, if you pay for your prescriptions, it's probably cheaper to buy it yourself anyway! As far as amount is concerned, Lynne has given some good info. My GP recommends my blood Vit D level should be at least 100 nmol/litre, which for me isn't possible to achieve on a standard (around 800iu a day) dose of Vit D. I've discovered my level has been rising about 11 nmol/litre every 4 months by taking 2400iu a day, but when I reduced my supplement to 800iu per day over the summer months, my level dropped by 19 points (from 89 to 70) despite lots of sunbathing, so I clearly absorb little if any from the sun! I'm now taking about 7400iu daily to get my level up to where it should be, hopefully by the end of the year, then I'll reduce a little to keep it there. We're all different, so there's a lot of trial and error (as I've said, I don't seem to absorb from the sun, but I do absorb reasonably well from supplements) and you'll need to get your blood Vit D level checked 2-3 times a year. My surgery is happy to do that for me (on the NHS), but not all GPs will, and many say a blood level of 50 is adequate. If you do take higher level Vit D, many experts also recommend that you take Vit K2 (MK7, 90 - 180mcg per day, or MK4, not sure of dose but it's much higher) and magnesium (not sure of dose for that either, seen different recommendations - I currently take 250mg daily, aiming to increase that but not sure if my stomach will cope, also use a magnesium spray once a day and put Epsom Salts in the bath a couple of times a week, plus eat magnesium rich food). It's best to get calcium from your diet if at all possible, as supplemental calcium can sometimes cause other health problems, particularly if your diet already contains enough!

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I use a Vit D spray that I get from BetterYou website. They’ve got lots of information on their site. I find I don’t forget to use spray as I always read a few pages of my book at bedtime and I keep the spray on top of book.

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