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UPCOMING EVENTS, BLOG AND NEW BOOKS
Increased active vitamin D levels could help optimize muscle strength
Feb 22, 2017

A recent study by University of Birmingham researchers shows that muscle strength can be optimized by increasing active vitamin D levels.

Previous research demonstrated a link between inactive vitamin D levels and a lack of muscle mass. The current study, published in PLOS ONE, gathered data from 116 participants in a clinical trial that measured multiple forms of vitamin D, as well as body composition, muscle function, and muscle gene expression. The results showed that active vitamin D was associated with lean mass rather than body fat.

“By looking at multiple forms in the same study, we can say that it is a more complex relationship that previously thought,” Zaki Hassan-Smith, from the University of Birmingham, said. “It may be that body fat is linked to increased levels of inactive vitamin D, but lean mass is the key for elevated levels of active vitamin D. It is vital to understand the complete picture, and the causal mechanisms at work, so we can learn how to supplement vitamin D intake to enhance muscle strength.”

full story . . .
Vitamin D – Missing Its Full Potential in Healthcare System
Feb 17, 2017

BELLEVILLE, Ont.– HEALTH – An acquaintance of mine in his late 70s recently told a group that he had just been hospitalized with pneumonia for five days. The local hospital system, he said, was completely gridlocked, jammed to the rafters with people like him. No rooms were available and patients were in the corridors.

Some of his listeners, keenly aware of a local initiative to construct a new hospital, responded, “This just proves how much we need the new hospital!”

But as a longtime student of nutrition, my reaction was, “This just proves how deficient Canadians are in vitamin D!” It also revealed how unaware most Canadians are of this crucial vitamin.

There’s abundant scientific research linking low vitamin D levels to an increased incidence and severity of pneumonia. Credible studies also show that large numbers of Canadians lack adequate vitamin D for optimal health, particularly during the winter when they get no sunshine.

full story . . .
A Bit More Vitamin D Might Help Prevent Colds And Flu
Feb 17, 2017

It's long been known that vitamin D helps protect our bones, but the question of whether taking vitamin D supplements helps guard immunity has been more controversial. An analysis published Wednesday suggests the sunshine vitamin can help reduce the risk of respiratory infections, including colds and flu — especially among people who don't get enough of the vitamin from diet or exposure to sunlight.

Researchers pooled data from 25 studies that included more than 10,000 participants. The studies looked at whether vitamin D supplements cut the number of infections.

"We found that overall there was a modest protective effect," says Dr. Adrian Martineau, a clinical professor of respiratory infection and immunity at Queen Mary University of London who led the research team. Overall, he says, vitamin D supplements seemed to reduce the risk of infection about 10 percent.

full story . . .
5 ways to make sure you are not vitamin D deficient
Feb 16, 2017

By Dr. Gerry Schwalfenberg, MD, CCFP, FCFP, 16 Feb, 2017

Many of us know how important vitamin D levels are to our overall health and that we get most of our intake through outdoor summer sun UVB exposure. But what can we do in the winter when outdoor UVB is unavailable at our Canadian latitude? Here are some practical ways to make sure you are not vitamin D deficient this winter:

 
1. Test your vitamin D level – The only way to know if you are vitamin D deficient is through a 25(OH)D blood test. This can be prescribed by your doctor and there may be a fee involved. Another option would be to purchase a home blood test kit through an organization like GrassrootsHealth. Either way, make sure you get your test score and compare it to the level recommended by over 50 vitamin D scientists of 100-150 nmol/L. If you are not within this ideal level, adjust your intake either up or down, using some of the options below, and re-test again after 3 months since it takes some time to bring the levels up.
 
2. Take a trip south – Approximately 90% of our vitamin D is produced in our skin with UVB light from the sun. There is nothing better than getting away to a sunny destination and soaking up some rays. To produce vitamin D in your skin the location needs to be below 35° N latitude or roughly below Atlanta, GA. Vitamin D is best produced at midday when the sun is high in the sky with the UV index above 3 and your shadow shorter than your height. Consider acclimatizing your skin before going south so you don’t burn as easily. Remember, sunscreen applied properly reduces your vitamin D production by up to 95+%. Try getting some sun exposure for vitamin D first and then applying sunscreen to make sure you do not burn.
full story . . .
New evidence that vitamin D prevents respiratory infections
Feb 16, 2017

A large-scale meta-analysis using more than 10,000 participants concludes that vitamin D supplementation may help to prevent a major cause of global death - acute respiratory tract infections.

Acute respiratory tract infections are responsible for 10 percent of ambulance and emergency room visits in the United States.

Including anything from the common cold to pneumonia and bronchitis, they were the cause of an estimated 2.65 million deaths globally in 2013.

Respiratory tract infections have a wide array of risk factors, including overcrowding, a damp living environment, air pollution, and parental smoking.

A number of observational studies have also reported a nutritional risk factor - vitamin D deficiency. Some researchers have concluded that vitamin D has the ability to trigger an immune response to certain viruses and bacteria.

However, the links between respiratory tract infections and vitamin D supplementation have remained controversial; some studies support the theory while others are inconclusive. To date, five meta-analyses have been conducted on existing data. Two of these reported significant positive effects, and three found no significant effect.

full story . . .
UMMS study finds majority of children with irritable bowel syndrome are low on vitamin D
Feb 14, 2017

Pediatric endocrinologist Benjamin Nwosu calls for monitoring and supplementing vitamin D in pediatric IBS patients

Cramps, bloating, diarrhea and constipation—these are the uncomfortable symptoms that can make life miserable for those suffering from irritable bowel syndrome, including as many as one in six children. Though not a disease that damages the intestinal tract, IBS is still a disabling functional disorder, meaning it is a group of unexplained symptoms that occur together.

Now a new study Benjamin U. Nwosu, MD, has found more that 90 percent of preteens and teenagers with IBS are deficient in Vitamin D, adding another concern for patients. Vital for overall health, adequate Vitamin D is essential for children’s growing bones.

full story . . .
 
Events  
Truth About Healthy Lives Conference
Apr 08, 2017        8:00am-3:00pm

WHO WOULD NOT BENEFIT FROM A HEALTHIER, MORE BEAUTIFUL LIFE ?

Refresh your mind & join us April 8th, 2017 at

The Truth About Healthy Lives Conference - learn amazing healthy lifestyle tips from today's best & brightest innovators from the Medical, Naturopath & Homeopath fields. Pick up makeup tips from Natural Beauty Experts. Explore, Eat & Shop the Specialty Artisan Food Market (including healthy, gluten free, vegan, sugarless products & sampling). Connect & speak with leading Scientists, Nutritionalists, Vendors, Artists & Fashion Gurus. Check out the Women's Boxing Ring, recoup & find your zen at home with Interior Design & Sleep Specialists.

Together we will stimulate learning, engagement and create an open dialogue - knowledge is power!

$20.00+ Advanced Ticket Price | $25.00+ after March 17th, 2017

The extra fun part? Be sure to get your tickets early as you will automatically be entered into a Door Prize Draw! In anticipation of the event, names will be drawn weekly for prizes.

Tons of incredible, healthy lifestyle prizes to be won! Follow link for details.

www.truthabouthealthylives.com

The hashtag for this event is #EmpowerMeTO

Explore | Eat | Shop

event details
20th Vitamin D Workshop
Mar 28, 2017        

20th Vitamin D Workshop

2017
 

Orlando, FL - March 28-31, 2017

event details
Blog  
Lower vitamin D level linked to higher mortality rate in large European study
Feb 21, 2017

by William B. Grant, PhD

A new paper in the open-access journal reported the relation between vitamin D level and mortality rates based on a study of 26,916 individuals from a European consortium [Gaksch, 2017]. The countries involved were Denmark, Germany, Iceland, the Netherlands, and Norway. The average age of the participants at the time of enrollment ranged between 43 years in one German study to 76 years in the Iceland study. Average body mass index ranged from 23 in Denmark to 27 in one of the German studies. Women were slightly more represented than men. By the end of the studies, 6802 participants had died. The average follow-up time varied from 7.5 to 17.8 years. While vitamin D levels can change with time, the authors reported that follow-up time did not affect the findings.

So, what were the findings? All-cause mortality rate was minimal at 85 nmol/L (34 ng/mL). However, the findings were not considered significant for vitamin D levels above 50 nmol/L (20 ng/mL). This result is because there is not a one-in-twenty chance that the results for vitamin D levels above 50 nmol/L would be different from unity. At a vitamin D level of 10 nmol/L, the risk of death was 2.5 times that at 85 nmol/L.

full post . . .
Putting the Risk of Vitamin D Toxicity into Perspective
Mar 31, 2016

by Samantha Kimball, PhD, MLT

Vitamin D is unique among nutrients. Vitamin D is actually more of a hormone than a vitamin. Vitamin D is used by nearly every cell in the body. It can be obtained naturally from the sun or by ingesting it. It was named a “vitamin” when it was discovered that many people were deficient and it could be obtained from their diet, this happened because they were not getting enough from sun exposure. This is more prevalent today than ever.

If you are lucky enough to live near the equator, where you can synthesize vitamin D year-round, and you spend a minimal amount of time unprotected in the sun and fully exposed (15 minutes in a bathing suit) each day, you probably get enough vitamin D from that ball of life in the sky. However, we Canadians are not so lucky. Our northern climate means that in the winter the sun isn’t powerful enough for our bodies to make vitamin D at all and in the summer months, when it is possible to make vitamin D, most people wear sunscreen which blocks the sun and the production of vitamin D. With our extremely limited ability to obtain vitamin D naturally we need to supplement.

There is a continuous debate among vitamin D experts about how much vitamin D you need to take to be healthy. Opinions and comments like “Vitamin D has health benefits,” but “you shouldn’t take too much because it is just too risky!” are confusing and often portrayed in parallel in the media. What is missing is a little perspective.

full post . . .
How much vitamin D should I take?
Jan 14, 2016

This is the most common question for vitamin D. Recommending, calculating or finding the right dose of vitamin D intake for anyone is difficult. That’s because it’s complicated!

Why? Because everyone is different. Different weights, genetics, skin colour, diets, UV exposure etc. What research has shown us is that the same D3 supplementation dose given to a group of people will result in a wide range of vitamin D blood levels as determined through 25(OH)D testing.

Here is a chart published by GrassrootsHealth which shows vitamin D levels by D3 supplementation dose taken. You can see that the same dose provides a huge variation in vitamin D blood levels. How can anyone really predict where you will fall in this chart?

Recently a new Canadian research paper1 was published in the peer reviewed journal Nutrients, by a group of researchers from the University of Alberta (Veuglers 2015). They used a dual approach and a review of 108 published estimates of vitamin D supplementation to determine the optimal vitamin D dose that minimizes the risk for both a low and high vitamin D blood level.

full post . . .
Books  

Susan Rex Ryan
Defend Your Life

Defend Your Life has three main sections. The first addresses the fundamentals of vitamin D3 and its awesome benefits as well as minimal risk. The second highlights select diseases and conditions about which vitamin D3 may offer protection. The third includes the author's personal vitamin D3 story, including her theory about adequate vitamin D3 levels and how you can 'Defend Your Life'.

Reading this book will help you understand how adequate amounts of vitamin D3 are essential to enhancing your quality of life.


Ian Wishart
Vitamin D: Is This the Miracle Vitamin?

In this compelling new book,award-winning investigative journalist and bestselling author Ian Wishart brings together the most up to date science on vitamin D and how it could well save your life. Cancer? Up to a 77% reduction in risk of developing it if you take this vitamin. Heart disease? The same kind of reduction. Did you know that autism, mental illness and multiple sclerosis all appear to be caused by a lack of vitamin D during pregnancy?

The lives of every single person, including you, will be affected by the information in this book. With more than 300 scientific trials and studies cited, this book is a reference guide not just for the general reader but for medical professionals alike.


 more books...

PRESS RELEASES
 
SCIENTIFIC ADVISORS

New Canadian study provides strong evidence that low vitamin D levels cause Alzheimer’s Disease

NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Distribution

TORONTO, Ont (January 18, 2017) – A new scientific study published in Neurology from researchers at McGill University has provided evidence to support vitamin D as a causal risk factor for Alzheimer’s disease (AD). The McGill study found that lower vitamin D levels increased the risk of Alzheimer’s disease by 25% using a Mendelian randomization (MR) methodology which minimizes bias due to confounding or reverse causation.

Alzheimer’s disease is expected to double throughout the world in the next 20 years. The Alzheimer Society of Canada estimates that approximately 747,000 Canadians are living with some form of dementia.

There is no treatment that can effectively stop the progression of Alzheimer’s disease despite considerable effort. Therefore, disease prevention through modifiable risk factors where possible is critical. Ensuring vitamin D sufficiency through increased non-burning sun exposure in summer or vitamin D supplementation may be a cost-effective approach to help reduce Alzheimer’s disease risk.

full press release

Pregnant women should increase vitamin D levels - new studies suggest

NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Distribution

TORONTO, Ont (December 13, 2016) – New studies have shown how important it is for pregnant women to have optimal blood levels of vitamin D to help lower the risk of their babies developing multiple sclerosis and autism.

A newly published study in Neurology from Danish researchers has found that babies born within the lowest quintile of vitamin D levels had twice the risk for future multiple sclerosis (MS) as infants born in the highest quintile. This led the researchers to conclude that low concentrations of neonatal vitamin D are associated with an increased risk of MS.

Earlier this year, a study published in JAMA Neurology on data from the Finnish Maternity Cohort also found that maternal vitamin D deficiency during early pregnancy was associated with a 2-fold increased risk of MS in the offspring compared with women who did not have deficient vitamin D levels.

Adding further support for increased vitamin D supplementation for pregnant women is a new study published in Molecular Psychiatry on autism. The large population-based cohort of mothers and their children found that gestational vitamin D deficiency was associated with an increase in autism-related traits in 6-year-old children linking gestational vitamin D deficiency and altered brain development. The authors concluded: “It is feasible that a safe, cheap and publicly accessible vitamin D supplement in at risk groups may reduce the prevalence of this risk factor. Just as prenatal folate supplementation has reduced the incidence of spina bifida, we speculate that prenatal vitamin D supplementation may reduce the incidence of autism.”

full press release

Study Urges Public Health to Embrace Sunlight Benefits

NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Distribution

TORONTO, Ont (November 29, 2016) – Just days after research warned Canadians that vitamin D deficiency was costing Canadian healthcare $12.5B annually by leading to a higher risk of developing life-threatening illnesses, a new study from the US is supporting the Canadian research and challenging conventional sun exposure advice. The study calls for public health organizations to re-evaluate their current message of sun avoidance and to promote non-burning sun exposure for vitamin D and other health benefits.

The recently published study, written by one of the most qualified and diverse groups of researchers in the fields of pigment cell research, photobiology, melanoma research, dermatology and vitamin D, “The Risks and Benefits of Sun Exposure 2016” by David G. Hoel, Marianne Berwick, Frank R. de Gruijl and Michael F. Holick, has found that insufficient sun exposure is an emerging public health risk. 

full press release
 
Dr. Reinhold Vieth

Professor, University of Toronto, Departments of Nutritional Sciences and Laboratory Medicine and Pathobiology.


Click to View Dr. Michael Holick, Ph.D., M.D.

Professor of Medicine, Physiology and Biophysics; Director of the General Clinical Research Unit; and Director of the Bone Health Care Clinic and the Director of the Heliotherapy, Light, and Skin Research Center at Boston University Medical Center.


Click to View Carole Baggerly

"Director, GrassrootsHealth, a Public Health Promotion Organization
leading D*action, the world's largest ongoing vitamin D intervention
project.
www.grassrootshealth.net"

 


 more advisors...

Converter Tool

In Canada Vitamin D 25(OH)D levels are measured in nmol/L. In the U.S. it is measured as ng/ml. To convert:

Enter nmol/L: ng/ml
Enter ng/ml: nmol/L