I just reviewed the latest recommendations regarding vitamin D levels and intake according to the Pharmacist’s Letter (January 2011-Volume 27-Number 270102).
As always, if the blood level of 25(OH)D (calcidiol) is below 20 ng/ml, vitamin D deficiency exists and must be corrected. The general consensus is levels between 20-30 ng/ml are considered adequate. This is in contrast to the first blog, which recommended optimal levels of 35-55 ng/ml. However, the article seems to promote a level0f 30 ng/ml as optimal. Therefore, as I recommended in my second blog, the goal should be to achieve a calcidiol blood level in the high twenties or low thirties (ng/ml).
The final recommendation is 800 IU of vitamin D for patients over age of 70 and 600 IU daily for younger adults and children over one year of age. This is NOT the recommended dose for patients with vitamin D deficiency, as much higher doses are needed. Since most patients take in 100-200 IU of vitamin D regularly, the usual supplemental dose of 400 IU should be adequate (such as seen in Centrum, etc.) It is important to follow the blood levels of vitamin D, as each person may respond differently.
I also wanted to mention the timing of taking most vitamin supplements. Tea, coffee, beverages containing caffeine, alcohol, and some medication may affect the absorption of vitamins. Therefore, it is important to leave at least 30 minutes gap between taking your vitamins and ingesting any of the above.
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