June 14, 2011

Do You Know Your Number?

I had my annual check-up a few weeks ago and was surprised when my wonderful doctor, Catherine Mintzer, sent me a note afterward saying that my vitamin D level was 26. It should be between 50-80. I take a multi-vitamin, and a calcium supplement, and I eat well. How could this be? I even use a face cream in the winter that doesn't have a sunscreen in it so that I at least get a little sunshine, which also helps vitamin D levels.

Being the info-maniac that I am, I headed straight to google to find out more about this vitamin that, until now, I have paid no attention to.

The weirdest thing is that I wasn't really noticing any of these symptoms of vitamin D deficiency:

Fatigue, general weakness, insomnia, chronic pain, depression, bone fragility, high blood pressure and cholesterol levels, obesity, and low sex drive. Not to mention that vitamin D deficiency can be a contributor  to certain types of cancer. The lack of vitamin D also causes the immune system not to function at its optimal level. Therefore, we may notice an increase in colds, flu and asthma...

I also learned that vitamin D is the only vitamin that is a hormone.

Dr. Mintzer put me on a 50,0000 iu supplement once a week, for 8 weeks, and will test my level again in 3 months. The good news is that I am sleeping like a baby. Sleeping like I haven't slept in years. I don't usually have trouble sleeping, unless I have something on my mind, but lately my nights are like a triple matinee in the dream department, every night. I am not even getting up to pee. And guess what else? My sex drive is a little stronger too...maybe this is just a placebo effect, but who cares!

Anyway, I want to scream the news far and wide about vitamin D deficiency because I have a feeling that so many people are effected, don't know it, and could really benefit from a supplement.

So please pass it on!

And be sure to have your vitamin D level tested by your doctor if you are thinking of taking a supplement as you can become toxic with too much vitamin D.

Below is a clip of Katie Couric discussing vitamin deficiency with Dr. Jon LaPook.