Vitamin D Update September 2016

In my recent blood test from September I also checked my Vitamin D level.  Because my job involves working indoors, at a desk, in front of a computer for 10 hours a day, it’s rare for me to get much sun exposure.  Sometimes I’ll sneak out for a coffee run or something, but even then only my face and hands will be exposed since I typically wear a dress shirt, and the walk to the coffee shop only takes 5-10 minutes.  We’re talking minimal exposure at most.

When I’m not at work I’m either working on this blog, again indoors, at a desk, in front of a computer, or I’m training BJJ, indoors on the mats.  Maybe twice a week I’ll go to Crossfit, but the way my schedule works out, this is either very early in the morning before the sun rises or in the evening after the sun has set.

In order for me to maintain optimized levels of Vitamin D I need to supplement, and in order to track how well I’m supplementing, I need to measure my blood levels.

Whenever I’ve slacked with my supplementation, my levels drop like a stone.  Vitamin D plays an essential role in calcium regulation, bone density, gene expression, immunity, obesity, and may have anti-cancer effects.  While the normal range provided by labs are 30.0-100.0 ng/mL, the consensus among most resources I’ve looked into state that the optimal range is somewhere between 50-70 ng/mL.

When I first checked in late 2013, my levels were low:

December 16, 2013 – 31.3 ng/mL

After supplementing with Mark Sisson’s Primal Sun I was able to bring it up.

April 4, 2014 – 54.3 ng/mL

I slacked off again and it dropped:

October 23, 2014 – 39.9 ng/mL

My supplementation switched to Athletic Greens D3 + K2 because I wanted the added benefit of Vitamin K2, and things improved a bit:

March 16, 2015 – 45.1 ng/mL

Again I slacked…. and my levels dropped when I saw Dr. Dall, my lipidologist.  Incidentally she said she likes to keep levels between 50-90 ng/mL:

July 1, 2015 – 31 ng/mL

I changed my supplements again to Thorne Research Vitamin D/K2 because it was a bit cheaper at the time, and still wasn’t supplementing enough because when I rechecked things were still low:

December 1, 2015 – 35.2 ng/mL

I increased my dosage of Thorne Research Vitamin D/K2 to between 8000-12000 IU per day and managed to bring things back up:

January 12, 2016 – 49.2 ng/mL

Where I Am Now

September 8, 2016 – 36.3 ng/mL

Looks like I slacked again.  Right before our cross country move I ran out of my supplements and didn’t bother to order more.  Now it looks like it’s time to resupply.

I don’t know why I haven’t gotten it through my thick skull that I need to be on regular Vitamin D supplementation because my lifestyle just doesn’t support enough natural UV exposure, but it’s just one of those lessons I need to learn and re-learn every so often.

Hopefully you guys are doing a better job than me of staying on top of your Vitamin D levels.

*Image found here

4 Responses to Vitamin D Update September 2016

  1. Susan Hardman says:

    I have the same issue, Caveman. When I run out of D3 I sometimes forget to go get more. I have Fermented Cod Liver Oil that I take which supplies K2 and a bit of good natural D, but it is super expensive so I run out and wait to reorder sometimes on that, too. It is a hell of deal trying to stay healthy. Between your posts and my new Ketonix, I am in the zone, staying in ketosis. Thank you for your blood work and your blog work!

  2. Dan Ordoins says:

    Thanks for sharing. Very interesting. I see nothing trumps the sun for V D. And the sun provides much more in benifits and the pathway in which your body absorbs and uses D is so much more important for health over supplements. Your health counts on you collecting the sun rays. We are outdoor creatures.
    Try gettting getting morning rays on your whole body, yes your junk too and even your eyes for 10-20 minutes each day. Game changer. See how your D levels fair then. And yes still get outside at every opportunity. Even in the cold.
    Luck keeping your levels up. I belive you can do it with out supplements. And before you ever reach for a supplement chase whole foods the that deliver D. Seafood and mushrooms capture and deliver it for us. Eat those first and you also get a good load of nutrients along with it.
    Thanks for the write up. These are just my experences.

    • BJJ Caveman says:

      I agree wholeheartedly that it’d be ideal to get it all from the Sun. It’s just difficult when I’m waking before sunrise and ending after sunset, without a lunch break. Maybe on the weekends… but being from southern california, I’m a big wuss when it comes to cold, and anything less than 70, makes it hard for me to walk around shirtless… let alone bottom less (to get my junk involved).

      Also I don’t want my neighbors to think that I’m a complete nut case since I’d be the only one sunbathing smack dab in the middle of winter… at least not yet!

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