MORE VIDEOS
WHAT’S YOUR D-LEVEL?
GET TESTED
Maintain your Vitamin D level
between 100 – 150 nmol/L
LEARN MORE >
Vitamin D Health Benefits
Natural Levels of Vitamin D
Key Resources
Books

 

LATEST VITAMIN D NEWS
 
UPCOMING EVENTS, BLOG AND NEW BOOKS
Too Little Sunshine Can Take A Toll On Your Health, Too
Sep 26, 2016

Throughout this beautiful summer, now nearing its end, we have heard a lot of warnings about the UV index, and have been told to stay out of the sun. So, am I confusing people by saying that avoiding sunshine could hurt you?

What we never seem to hear is the fact that a lot of research has shown that people who avoid sunshine are usually not as healthy as people who enjoy being out in the sun. Some of the most convincing research was published this spring, in the Journal of Internal Medicine. The work started out as a study into the risk of multiple melanoma, the worst kind of skin cancer, and connecting it to sunshine-related behavior of Swedish women.

Starting in 1990, nearly 30,000 Swedish women were asked about their sun-exposure habits, as well as smoking and their health in general. Twenty years later, their health records were accessed via the Swedish health computer system to see how they did. Considering that the research aimed to make a connection between sun exposure and multiple melanoma, the conclusion was surprising: "We found no differences in all cause or cutaneous malignant melanoma (MM) mortality between those who expose themselves to and those who avoid the sun."

full story . . .
Vitamin D levels in pregnant women could be linked to some learning disabilities in children
Sep 22, 2016

Learning disabilities are more common in children who were conceived between January and March – the time of year when there is insufficient sunlight to produce vitamin D – according to a new study led by the University of Glasgow.

The study, which is published in the American Journal of Epidemiology, was written in collaboration with researchers from the University of Cambridge, the NHS and the Scottish Government. It found that 8.9% of children who had been conceived between January and March had learning disabilities. In contrast only 7.6% who had been conceived between July and September had learning disabilities.

The overall difference was due to autism, intellectual difficulties and learning difficulties such as dyslexia. There were no seasonal patterns for other causes of learning difficulties such as visual or hearing problems, or physical illness.

full story . . .
Sensible sun exposure key to unlocking health benefits of vitamin D, expert says
Sep 19, 2016

The health benefits of vitamin D generated by sensible sun exposure, especially the maintenance of strong bones, outweigh the risk of skin cancer, according to one of the world’s leading authorities on vitamin D for human nutrition.

The major source of vitamin D for most humans is sun exposure, but some dermatology and medical associations have argued that any sun exposure increases the risk of skin cancer.

“There really is, in my opinion, no evidence to suggest that adequate sensible sun exposure that would improve your vitamin D intake would increase risk for this deadly cancer melanoma,” Michael Holick, professor of medicine, physiology and biophysics at Boston University School of Medicine (BUSM), said in a recent interview with Life Science Daily. “It’s true that sunburns and excessive sun exposure increase risk for melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers, but what I have been recommending is to go outside for about 50 percent of the time that it would take to get a sunburn, followed by good sun protection.”

full story . . .
Avoiding the sun could hurt you
Sep 14, 2016

Throughout this beautiful summer we have heard a lot of warnings about the UV index, and have been told to stay out of the sun. So, am I confusing people by saying that avoiding sunshine could hurt you?

What we never seem to hear, is the fact that a lot of research has shown that people who avoid sunshine are usually not as healthy as people who enjoy being out in the sun.  Some of the most convincing research was published this spring, in the Journal of Internal Medicine. The work started out as a study into the risk of multiple melanoma, the worst kind of skin cancer, and connecting it to sunshine-related behavior of Swedish women. 

Starting in 1990, nearly 30,000 Swedish women were asked about their sun-exposure habits, as well as smoking and their health in general. Twenty years later, their health records were accessed via the Swedish health computer system to see how they did.  Considering that the research aimed to make a connection between sun exposure and multiple melanoma, the conclusion was surprising, “we found no differences in all cause or cutaneous malignant melanoma (MM) mortality between those who expose themselves to and those who avoid the sun.” The authors, Dr. Pelle Lindqvist and colleagues, did make it clear that risk of less severe forms of skin cancer did increase with sun exposure.

full story . . .
A few more weeks to naturally boost your vitamin D levels
Sep 07, 2016

Vitamin D has many known positive effects, including reducing the risk of developing some serious diseases and improving mood and well-being. But because of Canada’s northern latitude our time frame for getting the most from the sun’s rays is short (May to October). When the UV index is above 3 and your shadow is shorter than your height is when you can make vitamin D.

Approximately 12 million Canadians do not meet vitamin D blood level requirements set by Health Canada and the Institute of Medicine, and this figure rises to more than 40% during winter, making spring and summer an important time for Canadians to naturally create vitamin D from sunlight.

According to Cancer Research UK, enjoying the sun safely, while taking care not to burn, can help to provide the benefits of vitamin D without unduly raising the risk of skin cancer. The Vitamin D Society encourages Canadians to use their time in the sun wisely to stock up on the sunshine vitamin but to remember to use common sense and not let skin burn. The best way to generate vitamin D is by going out into the sun for 15 to 30 minutes, 2 to 3 times per week, and adjusting your time in the sun accordingly if you burn easily.

The Vitamin D Society recommends people achieve and maintain optimal 25(OH)D blood levels between 100 and 150 nmol/L.
—Kia Dullemond
UBC Medicine, Class of 2019

full story . . .
High quality evidence suggests Vitamin D can reduce asthma attacks
Sep 06, 2016

A new Cochrane Review published in the Cochrane Library has found evidence from randomized trials that taking an oral vitamin D supplement in addition to standard asthma medication is likely to reduce severe asthma attacks.

Asthma is a common chronic disease, affecting about 300 million people worldwide. The symptoms of asthma include wheezing, coughing, chest tightness, and shortness of breath.

Low blood levels of vitamin D have been linked to increased risk of asthma attacks in children and adults with asthma. There has been a growing interest in the potential role of vitamin D in asthma management, because it might help to reduce upper respiratory infections (such as the common cold) that can lead to exacerbations of asthma. Several clinical trials have tested whether taking vitamin D as a supplement has an effect on asthma attacks, symptoms, and lung function in children and adults with asthma.

full story . . .
 
Events  
20th Vitamin D Workshop
Mar 28, 2017        

20th Vitamin D Workshop

2017
 

Orlando, FL - March 28-31, 2017

event details
Blog  
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 . . .
The vitamin D debate is not likely to disappear
Dec 04, 2015

by Samantha Kimball, PhD, MLT

 There seems to be a line drawn in the sand with respect to the debate concerning what the optimal levels of vitamin D are for health, and neither side wants to budge. On one side of the line of the current debate are those who support the recommendations officially set by government agencies.  However, most of the researchers who actively study vitamin D consider the latest official advice to be inadequate.  

There has been contention about the vitamin D recommendations made by the Institute of Medicine (IOM, which advises both Health Canada and the United States Food and Drug Administration).  The IOM released its updated report for vitamin D and calcium in 2010. Yet several groups of vitamin D experts suggest that people should achieve ‘optimal’ levels of vitamin D status, levels that are considerably higher than the ones the IOM recommendations are based on. The IOM’s Recommended Daily Allowance (RDA) of 600 IU/d was calculated to achieve adequate vitamin D status which was determined to be serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels [25(OH)D] of 50 nmol/L in 97.5% of the population. On the other hand, the Endocrine Society, Osteoporosis Canada, American Geriatrics society and the European Vitamin D Association all recommend target 25(OH)D levels of at least 75 nmol/L. The Vitamin D Society, Grassroots Health and the Vitamin D Council recommend that 25(OH)D levels be maintained above 100 nmol/L which require intakes well above the RDA and even above the tolerable upper level of intake (UL) in overweight and obese individuals. Why would the subject matter experts disagree with the IOM so openly?

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.


John J. Cannell, MD
Athlete's Edge - Faster, Quicker, Stronger with vitamin D

John Cannell, founder and executive director of the Vitamin D Council, provides a new perspective on the vitamin D story revealing a long-held secret once known only to Eastern European athletic trainers.

Vitamin D, the sunshine vitamin, improves muscle tone, muscle strength, balance, reaction time and physical endurance, as well as immunity and general health. In addition, ideal levels of vitamin D help protect you from a staggering array of chronic diseases such as cancer, heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, asthma, autism and even influenza.


 more books...

PRESS RELEASES
 
SCIENTIFIC ADVISORS

Vitamin D helps cut risks of severe asthma attacks

NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Distribution

Research review suggests vitamin D supplements reduce asthma hospital visits by 50%

TORONTO, Ont (September 20, 2016) – The Vitamin D Society is encouraged by a new research review that suggests the use of oral vitamin D supplements can help curb severe asthma attacks.

The independent review, carried out by scientists with the Cochrane research body and published in the Cochrane Library, examined results from seven studies including 435 children and two trials involving 658 adults. The majority of participants had mild to moderate asthma and a minority had severe asthma.

Cochrane researchers found individuals who take oral vitamin D supplements in addition to their standard asthma medication experience a significant reduction — approximately 50 percent — in severe asthma attacks and hospital visits, without any added side effects.

“These results are really exciting and promising for thousands of asthma patients across Canada, where we have significant incidence of vitamin D deficiency,” said Dr. Gerry Schwalfenberg, a scientific advisor to the Vitamin D Society and an Assistant Clinical Professor at the University of Alberta. “Low levels of vitamin D have been linked to an increased risk of attacks for those who live with asthma.”

full press release

UK Advises Vitamin D Supplements for Everyone Should Canada Follow?

NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Distribution

TORONTO, Ont (August 3, 2016) – A recently released report by the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (SACN) in the United Kingdom is urging all Brits to take vitamin D supplements, which according to the Vitamin D Society of Canada, should give Canadians a reason to start looking at their own vitamin D intake levels.

Much like the UK, Canada shares the same sunshine limitations, which means because of the northern latitude of both countries, vitamin D producing sunlight can only be captured by our skin between the months of May and October. This leaves Canadians and Brits in the cold and with declining vitamin D levels in the fall and winter.

The downside of low vitamin D levels means that bones can become thin and brittle because vitamin D plays an important role in regulating the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body - making it essential for bone health and more.

full press release

Summer is the season for Canadians to naturally boost vitamin D levels

NEWS RELEASE
For Immediate Distribution

TORONTO, Ont (July 14, 2016) – With school out and vacations in full swing, Canadians will be spending more time outdoors soaking up the sun.

According to the Vitamin D Society, summer is the best time for Canadians to naturally generate vitamin D, which has many positive effects, including reducing the risk of developing serious diseases, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, osteoporosis and others.

Dr. Reinhold Vieth, Scientific Advisor for the Vitamin D Society and professor at the University of Toronto, says that in addition to generating vitamin D, sunlight is known to improve mood and wellbeing. However, because of Canada’s northern latitude, our timeframe for getting the most from the sun’s rays is short – from May to October.

“Right now, we are in vitamin D summer. When the UV index is above 3 and your shadow is shorter than your height is when you can make vitamin D.” says Dr. Vieth. “For years, many strands of research have shown that people who are active in sunshine are healthier than those who avoid sun. We often assume that the health benefits of sunshine are solely due to vitamin D, but that is not proven yet.  In other words, it is likely that sunshine does more for our bodies than just produce vitamin D.”

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