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Why you should take Vitamin D (even in summer)

Why you should take Vitamin D (even in summer)
By Olenka Quintrell 2 months ago 8675 Views

What is vitamin D?

Vitamin D is one of the only vitamins we can actually make ourselves, yet 25% of the general UK population may be severely deficient!1

This fat-soluble vitamin is involved in many systems in the body and is required for optimal health. It’s well known that vitamin D plays a vital role in supporting bone density by enhancing the absorption of calcium and phosphorus, but are you aware of its many other functions? There is ongoing research into just how important this nutrient is for other body systems too, such as for strengthening and balancing our immune system, and supporting the cardiovascular, nervous, and reproductive system, in a multitude of weird and wonderful ways.

Where do we get vitamin D from?

The main forms of vitamin D are ergocalciferol (vitamin D2) and cholecalciferol (vitamin D3). We get the former from plant sources such as mushrooms and tofu, and the latter from mainly animal sources such as eggs, dairy products, and oily fish (e.g. salmon, anchovies). When our bare skin is exposed to UVB rays from the sun of the correct wavelength, our skin converts 7-dehydrocholesterol into previtamin D3 which is eventually metabolised by the liver and kidneys into 1,25dihydroxyvitamin D, the active form.

So why are we deficient in vitamin D?

Vitamin D deficiency is increasingly common, which is linked to an increased risk of infection, allergy, 2 and autoimmunity3 to name just a few associated health risks. Nowadays, this is mainly due to our lack of sunlight exposure, such as those of us with a sedentary lifestyle (e.g. working in an office) – which, let’s face it, is most of us in the busy modern world, along with a low intake through diet. There are also many other factors which can contribute to low vitamin D levels, including:

  • Pregnancy and breastfeeding4
  • Old age5
  • Dark or covered skin6
  • Obesity7
  • Low magnesium status. Magnesium is needed to activate vitamin D, so if you’re running low, say from low dietary intake coupled with high stress levels, this could be impacting your vitamin D status.8
  • Some of us also carry variants of the gene which codes for the Vitamin D Receptor (VDR), which can make it harder for vitamin D to bind to it and then carry out its multitude of different actions within cells.9

Don’t let the summer months fool you into thinking that your vitamin D status is optimal. If any of the above factors are relevant to you, it is quite likely that your level is actually sub-optimal and that it would be worth increasing your vitamin D intake to help optimise your health, especially before we move into autumn and winter. It’s important to be prepared for the cooler months when it comes to vitamin D!

The EU daily recommendation for vitamin D for an adult is 5µg (200IU),10 which might not be enough for many of us. There are many reasons as to why someone might need higher levels as we’ve seen above, and for this reason, 1000 IU can be a more optimal daily dosage of vitamin D for an adult. Where there is a deficiency, individuals will require higher doses and this is best guided by a health professional.

Our Products

All of our adult vitamin D products are safe to use during pregnancy and lactation at the full recommended daily dosage.

Nutrisorb® Liquid BioMulsion® D

Provides emulsified liquid vitamin D3, sourced from lanolin. Lanolin is a wax extracted from sheep’s wool which is an approved vegetarian source of vitamin D3. The vitamin D is emulsified using BioMulsion® technology which means that the vitamin D is generally easier to absorb and utilise, especially for those who struggle with digestive issues, especially fat maldigestion and malabsorption. This product provides a high potency 1000 IU (25µg) per drop, which is a great everyday dose for optimal health, and being a liquid, it can be easily scaled up to reach higher dosages when required. The liquid is naturally lemon flavoured, and is also a good option for those who have difficulty swallowing capsules or tablets, or who just prefer liquids.

Directions: 1 drop per day directly under the tongue, with food, or a higher dose as guided by a health professional. To be consumed within 6 months after opening.

Vitamin D3 1000iu – Vegan!

Using a new raw material, we are happy to be able to provide a therapeutic vitamin D3 supplement for vegans, sourced from lichen. It provides 1000IU (25µg) per capsule. This product is ideal for vegans for everyday use, or when they have been shown to have a low vitamin D status.

Directions: 1 capsule per day with food, or higher as guided by a health professional.

Bio-D


A lower potency, hypoallergenic, vegetarian liquid vitamin D3 supplement which has been designed for those who want to start ‘low and slow’ with their supplementation. It provides 400IU (10µg) per daily intake, and is also ideal for those who prefer not to consume capsules and tablets.

Directions: 4 drops per day directly under the tongue, with food.

What about the kids?

Vitamin D is vital for the development of strong bones and teeth, and a resilient, balanced immune system. Optimising vitamin D is therefore a vital consideration for infants and children too, to help give them the best start in life.

Baby Vitamin D Drops


A simple vegetarian vitamin D3 supplement, in a liquid olive oil base, designed especially for babies from 1 month onwards. It provides 300IU (7.5 µg) per 3 drops which can be increased to 4 drops as required for optimal support. This is ideal for breastfed babies who might not be getting the required amount from breastmilk due to the factors discussed above. This can be consumed alongside a small amount of formula-milk, however be mindful of the amount of vitamin D provided by formula to avoid consuming too high a dose.

Directions: 3 drops per day in water, juice, milk, or cool food, or higher as guided by a health professional.

Children’s BioMulsion® D

Designed especially for children using BioMulsion® technology to provide an emulsified, vegetarian vitamin D3, which is easy to absorb and utilise, with a natural lemon flavor which children love. It provides 300IU (7.5 µg) per 3 drops which can be increased as needed, as guided by a health professional, and can be taken alongside a children’s multinutrient for more comprehensive support. Suitable from 3 years onwards.

Directions: 3 drops per day in water, juice or milk with food, or higher as guided by a health professional.


If you are concerned about your vitamin D status, or have a particular condition, we recommend that you contact a Registered Nutritional Therapist for personalised guidance about vitamin D supplementation.




Got a question?

The brand you can talk to:

We have a team of Nutritionists at the end of our advice line, open to you, for product support and advice (5 days a week). 0121 433 8702 or clinicalnutrition@biocare.co.uk

Or head to our advice page where you can find Healthnotes.

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References

1 Department of Health. 2014. National Diet and Nutrition Survey: results from Years 1 to 4.

2 Erkkola et al. Maternal vitamin D intake during pregnancy is inversely associated with asthma and allergic rhinitis in 5-year-old children. Clin Exp Allergy. 2009; 39 (6): 875-82

3 Simpson et al. Latitude is significantly associated with the prevalence of multiple sclerosis: a meta-analysis. J Neurol Neurosurg Psychiatry. 2011; 82 (10): 1132-41.

4 Hollis BW et al. Vitamin D Supplementation during pregnancy; Double-blind, Randomised Clinical Trial of Safety and Effectiveness. J Bone and Mineral Research. 2011; 26 (10): 2341-57

5 Lips P. Worldwide status of vitamin D nutrition. Journal of Steroid Biochemistry and Molecular Biology, 2010; 121 (1-2): 297-300

6 Hatun S et al. 2005. Subclinical vitamin D is increased in adolescent girls who wear concealing clothing. J Nutr 135 (2):218-22

7 Carrelli A et al. J Bone Miner Res. 2017. Vitamin D storage in Adipose Tissue of obese and normal weight women. 32 (2): 237-242

8 Uwitonze AM, Razzaque MS. 2018. Role of Magnesium in Vitamin D Activation and Function J Am Osteopath Assoc. 118 (3): 181-189

9 Tizaoui K et al. Lung. 2014 Association of vitamin D receptor gene polymorphisms with asthma risk: systematic review and updated meta-analysis of case-control studies; 192 (6): 955-65

10 O’Connor A, Benelam B. An update on UK Vitamin D intakes and status, and issues for food fortification and supplementation. Nutrition Bulletin. 2011; 36: 390-6.