Vitamin D Deficiency/Maintenance Dose

Hello. This forum has been very helpful so what better place to ask this. I wanted to inquire on the D3 dosage for me and my brother.

I was found to be deficient a year ago and I have no doubt I've been deficient for many years, I wonder if my levels are good enough to resolve lingering symptoms that aren't linked to my hypothyroidism.

8 months ago after initial supplementation my levels were 130 nmol/L (75-150) or 52.1 ng/ml

Since then on maintenance dose of D3 10,000/week.

Recent lab: 84 nmol/L (75-150) or 33.7 ng/ml

In regards to my recently diagnosed 16 year old brother, after 2 months on 50,000/week D3 his level has only gone from <20 to 57 (75-150) or 22.8 ng/ml.

Now he has been prescribed 10,000/week for 3 months and will retest then. Is this an adequate dose for him or does he need a higher one? If needed he can self supplement from the shelf to complement this for a month or two.

Thanks in advance!

16 Replies

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  • VitD is fat soluble - are you taking it with good fats or buying a capsule containing olive oil ?

    grassrootshealth.net

    vitamindcouncil.org

    The doses are good so there must be an absorption issue.

  • Myself I take it with the biggest meal of the day, usually lunch or dinner. I wonder if my level is good enough or needs to be higher.

    In regards to my brother, I try to get him to take it similarly though he's accidentally taken it alone sometimes. He may have an absorption problem as 50,000/week for 2 months only brought him to 57. Given that, how the doctor thinks 10,000/week will bring him up is beyond me.

    He's had barely in range B12, doctor said was fine, but I got him to supplement 5,000 methylcobalmin sublingual/day for 2 months and now he takes 1,000, along with Thorne B-Complex. He was also deficient in iron despite regularly eating meat, though after 2 months supplementing he's in range and climbing. Was found to be negative for celiac.

    He's 16 years old. The doctor didn't bother to investigate the root cause. Told him the D deficiency can be from not getting the sun, gave him iron supplements, and wrote him a referral to see a physiotherapist for his shoulder pain (my brother told him he doesn't do any lifting or sports that could cause his physical weakness). Lol.

  • The 10,000 was a written script so he got it from the pharmacist. Do you think I should get my brother to take a larger dose, possibly an extra 2,000 or 5,000 for at least a month or two?

  • I would have thought the script was adequate ....

  • Being negative for coeliac does not mean you can absorb well - you can be gluten sensitive or have other sensitivities to various foods. Also LOW stomach acid is common so taking something to off-set could be helpful.

  • I am from New Zealand and I need and take Vitamin D3 in pure drop form from Appleton Associates Ltd. This was prescribed by my previous Dr. each drop is 1000. I take one drop a day in the summer and two drops per day in the winter. I just drop it on the back of my hand and lick it off. I goes magically into my system that way. I would be slow and depressed without it. I have Sjogrens Syndrome and an underactive Thyroid.

  • Andyb1205

    "8 months ago after initial supplementation my levels were 130 nmol/L (75-150)"

    The recommended range is 100-150nmol/L according to the Vit D Council so that level was good.

    "Since then on maintenance dose of D3 10,000/week.

    Recent lab: 84 nmol/L (75-150)"

    You've dropped below the recommended level. When I reduced to 2000iu daily X 5 days a week I dropped below. I now take 2000iu daily X 7 days a week and I'm back within range. 2000iu daily is a fairly common maintenance dose.

    **

    "In regards to my recently diagnosed 16 year old brother, after 2 months on 50,000/week D3 his level has only gone from <20 to 57 (75-150)

    Now he has been prescribed 10,000/week for 3 months and will retest then. Is this an adequate dose for him or does he need a higher one? If needed he can self supplement from the shelf to complement this for a month or two."

    10,000iu a week is less than a common maintenance dose, it's just 1,428iu daily. My suggestion would be, with a current level of 57nmol/L, to take 3000-4000iu daily until he's within the 100-150nmol/L range then reduce to 2000iu daily as a maintenance dose.

    Retesting is advised once or twice a year to keep within the recommended range and that can be done privately with a blood spot fingerprick test from vitamindtest.org.uk/index.html

    Are you both taking D3's important cofactors vitamindcouncil.org/about-v...

    D3 aids absorption of calcium from food and K2-MK7 directs the calcium to bones and teeth where it is needed and away from arteries and soft tissues where it can be deposited and cause problems.

    D3 and K2 are fat soluble so should be taken with the fattiest meal of the day (and four hours away from thyroid meds).

    Magnesium helps D3 to do it's job and comes in different forms, check to see which would suit best naturalnews.com/046401_magn... and as it's calming it's best taken in the evening (four hours away from thyroid meds).

    Check out the other cofactors too.

    A good D3 supplement containing olive oil bodykind.com/productsearch/...

  • Thanks Seaside, very helpful information! I will be soon ordering D3 5,000 IU and 2,000 IU pills, found a great brand in Canada (gel caps with olive oil) to complement the 10,000 IU pills I get from the doctor.

    I already take K2 MK-7 (gel caps in coconut oil). Not sure if they've worked or not, it seems the science and studies are still in its early stages, but despite my skepticism of unconventional/alternative medicine (fact is market has demand for these products and there is a profit motive to sell them) I take them to be safe.

    I'll get my brother to take 25,000 IU in the first month and 20,000 IU second month, followed by labs.

    Quick question. I want to get my levels from 84 (75-150) up fast as vitamin d deficiency symptoms have had a great toll on me and continue to. Is it safe if I take 20,000 for one month first?

    Also, for maintenance dose it's more convenient (simpler the better for my OCD) to take 15,000 (10,000 + 5,000) than 14,000 for me. Is that extra 1,000 enough of a risk of going over? Since I just had my labs, I wouldn't have my next Vitamin D blood test until around 6 months.

    Thanks in advance.

  • Andy, I'm unsure of what you mean by you're not sure if K2-MK7 has worked or not. I doubt you'd 'feel' anything specific from taking it as the job it does is directing calcium to bones and teeth. As D3 aids absorption of calcium from food, if it wasn't directed to bones and teeth it may very well get deposited in arteries and soft tissues and cause such problems as calcification of arteries, kidney stones, etc.

    20,000iu per week = 2857iu daily. There shouldn't be a problem with that considering 2000iu is a common maintenance dose and you're trying to raise your level.

    Your eventual maintenance dose will have to be worked out by trial and error. 2000iu daily is a common maintenance dose, some people need less, occasionally someone might need more. Can you not get home fingerprick blood spot or other home tests for Vit D like we can in the UK. Very many of us on the forum use home tests as it's not easy to get our GPs to test, our NHS doesn't like spending the money on retesting.

  • All great suggestions from SeasideSusie.

  • I've been very surprised by what I've read in this thread. I was diagnosed with fibro myalgia and suffered lots of severe aches and pains. Very little mobility - even had a blue badge for 6 years! After I read an article stating that 80% of patients diagnosed with fibro actually had vit D deficiency, I requested a test. I was found to be severely deficient and obviously had been for many many years. I was prescribed 800iu ( 2 tabs ) D3 per day. That is only 5,600 iu per week. I found that is not sufficient through the winter. I take the prescribed tabs through the summer but 1000 iu that I buy through the winter. My gp was not happy about my increasing from his prescribed level. I still don't feel that my mobility is as good as it should be - walking is still a bit stiff. I''ve been scared about increasing further as gp tests my level every year and says I do not need more - I'm always in the bottom half of the range.

    Earlier this year, my gp entered me into a test group for vit D. I was given different tablets and told I had to take only the 800iu prescribed a day and no more as the results were to be monitored. I was not at all happy about this as I knew I needed more through the winter. In the end I was removed from the test group because the new tablets were not vegetarian and I refused to take them.

    I have never been told that I need to take the tablets with food. The tablets I am prescribed only state to take them with water. I have always taken them last thing at night with a small drink. I take Pro D vegetarian capsules. I don't know what else they contain.

    How are we supposed to know how to take tablets etc if it does not state instructions on the PIL?

    I will take my vit D with food in future and I am going to increase my dose further.

    Thanks for the information.

  • dizzy864 You can see the ingredients of Pro D capsules here prod3.co.uk/index.php?route...

    Vit D Council information about other vitamins and minerals as cofactors vitamindcouncil.org/about-v...

    Vit D Council information about how much to take to achieve a certain level vitamindcouncil.org/i-teste...

    As it is in ng/ml and here in the UK the unit of measurement is nmol/L you need to convert, eg multiply Ng/ml by 2.5 to give nmol/L and divide nmol/L by 2.5 to give Ng/ml. As an example the recommended level is 100-150nmol/L so divide by 2.5 to give it as 40-60ng/ml

    You need to take Vit D with the fattiest meal of the day and four hours away from thyroid meds.

  • Hi,

    Thanks for your helpful reply. I will move taking my Pro D to dinner time. This should raise my levels a bit. I will also increase my dose.

    I was wondering about the dose I should be taking. How much difference does being in the sun make to how much vit D I should take?

    Should I ignore being in the sun and increase my dose all year round or should I take less if I've had a lot of sun? If the sun does make a difference, how much less should I take in the summer? My gp only tests my vit D levels once a year. The date is usually November time, so I've no way of knowing the affect the sun has on my levels.

    My vit D deficiency appears to be caused by my body's inability to store vit D for any length of time as I do and always enjoyed plenty of sunshine.

  • dizzy864

    I was wondering about the dose I should be taking.

    That depends on what your current level is.

    How much difference does being in the sun make to how much vit D I should take?

    Should I ignore being in the sun and increase my dose all year round or should I take less if I've had a lot of sun?

    If the sun does make a difference, how much less should I take in the summer?

    Not possible to say. We're all different and just because we are out in the sun doesn't mean we can absorb enough Vit D.

    I discovered I was severely deficient with a level of 15nmol/L, I supplemented and got it up to 202, and because the recommended level is 100-150nmol/L KI adjusted the dose and got it down into range. I found that 2000iu daily is my maintenance dose. I tried 5 days a week but went below range so put it back up to 7 days a week.

    I can't tolerate the sun, I feel a burning sensation even through clothes after a few minutes, so I avoid it and supplement all year round.

    My gp only tests my vit D levels once a year. The date is usually November time, so I've no way of knowing the affect the sun has on my levels.

    Test yourself with a home fingerprick test from City Assays (NHS Cty Hospital path lab who offer this test to the public for £28) vitamindtest.org.uk/index.html

    My vit D deficiency appears to be caused by my body's inability to store vit D for any length of time as I do and always enjoyed plenty of sunshine.

    That suggests you need to supplement all year round at a dose which keeps your level between 100-150nmol/L.

  • The only comment I can make on not being told to take vitamin D with food is - "Wow".

    The standard advice has been for years is to take all vitamin and mineral supplements with food as it was thought they wouldn't be absorbed. Iron is the general exception but even in the case of iron some people are told to take it with food to decrease the side effects. (The real way to try and reduce side effects with iron supplementation is to tell the patient to try a different iron salt.)

    I know GPs are bad at nutrient but they have guidelines which tell them how to prescribe vitamin D. Those who specialise - or claim to specialise - in treating children have all been on courses on vitamin D due to this high court case - familylawweek.co.uk/site.as... Even those who haven't have received the letters from the Chief Medical Officers about the problem.

    Funnily enough in my case my current GPs realised I knew a lot more about vitamin D then them so didn't comment on dosage. Oh and I have to pay for my own yearly tests. Then again I was diagnosed by a newly qualified nurse practitioner when her employers - experienced GPs at my old practice - knew SFA what was wrong with me. She implied the NHS refuses to follow best practice about it.

    BTW If you don't have any heart problems so you aren't on any calcium antagonists then you can take as much vitamin D as you like within the guidelines mentioned below to get your level to around 100nmol/L. Remember it is your body and you can refuse to answer how much vitamin D3 you take.

  • Thanks for your reply. I will move taking my Pro D to with my evening meal. Hopefully this will increase my overall level.

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