Do You Know Your Vitamin D3 Levels?

What are your Vitamin D3 levels, my friend?  Do you know?  Do you get regular blood work done to measure important biomarkers?  If not, why not?  You can have blood work done in any consumer based lab these days.  No doctor’s prescription needed.  Blood work is the easiest, most accessible ways to measure important markers in the interest of staying well.

We refer to Vitamin D as the “sunshine vitamin” because our body is able to “download” Vitamin D3 from the sun.  Of course, this gets challenging during the winter season due to less sun exposure.  People with darker skin synthesize less Vitamin D3 from the sun and are prone to lower levels.  We make less of Vitamin D3 as we get older, so age is also a factor.

Vitamin D3 functions more like a hormone than a vitamin.  It is a precursor to serotonin, the all important mood/sleep/safety neurotransmitter.  Low Vitamin D3 can lead to low serotonin, hence Seasonal Depression.  None of this is new-I wrote about this topic years ago-but it is really important, and I’m surprised most people do not monitor their Vitamin D3 levels.  The results from a study conducted in 2007 suggested that optimal levels of Vitamin D3 and calcium are correlated with a 77% decreased risk for cancer.  “Optimal” was defined as 40ng/mL or above in this study, but later research has suggested even higher levels are optimal.  I keep my levels between 80 and 90 ng/mL. 

I have my blood drawn every 3-4 months to measure my thyroid function, Vitamin D3 levels, inflammatory markers, and get a basic snapshot of my health.  Based on this data, I can adjust any supplementation accordingly (and my physician, Dr. Mark Rosenberg of AMTcare.com, can adjust my thyroid medication).  Currently, my Vitamin D3 levels hang out between 85 and 90.   The test costs approximately $30 and can be done at any blood lab.  I walk into the Life Extension Lab, get my blood work done, and leave within 15 minutes.  The results arrive on my email about 3-7 day slater, and I forward them to my physician.

How can you increase your Vitamin D3 levels?  I take 6000mg/day in the summer and 8000mg/day in the winter season.  Keep in mind that I live in the sunshine state, so our winter offers ample sunlight.  If I lived in the North, I would take more Vitamin D3 during the winter season.  I like keeping my levels high for health and longevity purposes.

That’s all for today, folks!  This is easy stuff to do, but do you actually do it?  Or do you get too busy to monitor your health status?  Life gets busy, I get it.  Find a consumer based lab like Life Extension, Any Lab Test Now, or even a LabQuest.  Then, find a functional medicine physician who supports your proactive effort to stay well!

 

 

 

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