Nine things that can undermine your Vitamin D level

9 things that can undermine your vitamin D level

According to 2011 National Centre for Health Data statistics, almost one in three Americans has vitamin D blood levels below 20 nanograms per milliliter (ng/ml), the threshold that the Institute of Medicine (IOM) says is needed for general health. We need levels between 60-80ng/ml for optimal health.

Many factors  can affect a person’s vitamin D levels. You can get vitamin D from food (mainly because it’s been added and few foods are natural sources of vitamin D (best food sources: Herrings (22.5mcg), mackerel (17.5mcg), salmon (12.5mcg) oysters (3mcg) cottage cheese (2mcg), eggs (1.75mcg) and sunshine).

Vitamin D is also produced by the sun when rays in the invisible ultraviolet B (UVB) part of the light spectrum are absorbed by the skin. The liver, and then the kidneys, are involved in the steps that eventually result in a bioavailable form of the vitamin D that the body can use.

Factors influencing Vitamin D absorption

1. Latitude:  At higher latitudes, the amount of vitamin D–producing UVB light reaching the earth’s surface goes down in the winter because of the low angle of the sun. In Bogota little if any of the vitamin is produced in people’s skin tissue from November through February. Short days in winter and clothing that covers legs and arms also limit UVB exposure.

2. The air pollution:  Carbon particulates in the air from the burning of fossil fuels, wood, and other materials scatter and absorb UVB rays. Ozone absorbs UVB radiation, so holes in the ozone layer could be a pollution problem that winds up enhancing vitamin D levels.

3. Sunscreen:  Sunscreen prevents sunburn by blocking UVB light and lowers vitamin D levels.

4. Skin colour:   Melanin is the substance in skin that makes it dark and  it “competes” for UVB with the substance in the skin that kick-starts the body’s vitamin D production.  Dark-skinned people tend to require more UVB exposure than light-skinned people to generate the same amount of vitamin D.

5. Temperature of your body: A warm skin is a more efficient producer of vitamin D than cool skin. You will make more vitamin D than on a hot day than cool day.

6. Weight:  Fat tissue stores vitamin D  -and is a  source of  vitamin D when intake is low or when production is reduced.  Obese pasients have a low vitamin D levels and also that being overweight may affect the bioavailability of vitamin D.

7. Age:  Older people have lower levels of the substance in the skin that UVB light converts into the vitamin D precursor, and older people are less efficient vitamin D producers than younger people.

8. GUT-health:  Vitamin D in food or as a supplement is absorbed in the part of the small intestines immediately downstream from the stomach. Stomach juices, pancreatic secretions, bile from the liver, and the integrity of the wall of the intestine— they all have some influence on how much of the vitamin is absorbedin the GUT.  Conditions that affect the gut and digestion, like celiac disease, chronic pancreatitis, Crohn’s disease, and cystic fibrosis, can reduce vitamin D absorption.

9.  Liver and kidney health:   Liver disease can reduce absorption of vitamin D because the ailing liver isn’t producing normal amounts of bile.  Levels of the bioactive form of vitamin D are in line with the health of the kidneys, so in someone with kidney disease, bioactive vitamin D levels decrease as the disease gets worse, and in end-stage kidney disease, the level is undetectable.


Leave A Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Select the fields to be shown. Others will be hidden. Drag and drop to rearrange the order.
  • Image
  • SKU
  • Rating
  • Price
  • Stock
  • Availability
  • Add to cart
  • Description
  • Content
  • Weight
  • Dimensions
  • Additional information
Click outside to hide the comparison bar