How does Vitamin A (and D) work in regards to blood calcium?

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So I actually have a few questions about this, and I'm very hopeful that there is someone here with a deep understanding of how Vitamin A (retinol/beta carotene) works.

But my main question is, precisely how does Vitamin A affect blood calcium levels? At deficient levels, normal levels, and high levels?

Because as I've always understood it - Vitamin A can actually lower blood calcium, and the more you take of it the more this happens, because it's sending it to the bones. But I just read that the opposite is true, and because high levels of Vitamin A (hypervitaminosis A) overactivates "osteoclasts", which are what cause the breakdown and remodeling of bones, as well as preventing "osteoblasts" which are the what cause the forming of bones, from doing their jobs, than this in turn breaks down bones and prevents more from being made - leaving all that extra calcium and broken down calcium in your blood stream.

But then if this is the case, why do they tell you to take extra calcium if you're taking higher than normal doses of Vitamin A (as an antioxidant for example)? Wouldn't that lead to dangerously high levels of blood calcium (hypercalcemia) as well?

And if Vitamin A in fact is what increases blood levels of calcium (which is clearly important for many functions besides just bones - like mood, heart, nerves, and so on), then what does Vitamin D do that you need to take these two in unison?

I've read many times in the past that you want to maintain a 4:1 ratio of Vitamin A:Vitamin D, and I always thought it was because of my original explanation above - vit D increases calcium, vit A keeps it at a good level - but is it the opposite?.

And if it that is the case, then why is it when I take significant vitamin D with my own illness - I suffer from many of the same effects of too much calcium (mania, excitatory, etc). Whereas if I take vitamin A, it is often the only thing that calm this down... And even seems to cause me to absolutely NEED more calcium. Keep in mind I also balance with magnesium and (occasionally) Vitamin K, which do not help these problems nearly as much as Vitamin A.

And most importantly - why is Hypervitaminosis A a serious problem, like with people who have taken excessive Accutane (myself). I always understood the reason for extreme depression, fatigue, back pain, and generally the entire CAUSE of my illness, while taking it was because of a severe reduced level of blood calcium for my adrenal glands and brain to make use of - but is the opposite actually true?

I'd really appreciate it if anyone can shed some light on this.


EDIT: Is it possible that because Vitamin A influences BOTH the osteoclasts AND osteoblasts, that even in very high doses IT can perhaps be influenced by something else (calcium...vitamin D... magnesium, Vitamin K, boron.. idk any of these) to STILL send calcium to the bones (osteoblasts) and lower blood calcium? Is that even remotely a possibility? Like with enough Vitamin D in your system if you take large doses of Vitamin A that could be considered toxic (not that I'm planning to, but I'm just trying to understand how it works, cus it's extremely relevant to my illness), and have it still work out to lowering blood calcium, instead of increasing it?
 
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Crux

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And if it that is the case, then why is it when I take significant vitamin D with my own illness - I suffer from many of the same effects of too much calcium (mania, excitatory, etc). Whereas if I take vitamin A, it is often the only thing that calm this down... And even seems to cause me to absolutely NEED more calcium. Keep in mind I also balance with magnesium and (occasionally) Vitamin K, which do not help these problems nearly as much as Vitamin A.
Vitamin D also increases the uptake of phosphorus, which is antagonistic to calcium.

Vitamin A in high amounts can antagonize vitamin D, calcium too.

High calcium in blood serum may be from loss of it from bone.

I've personally had extreme anxiety symptoms from low calcium and higher phosphorus.
 
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I'm not an expert and don't how how these vitamins interact at a deep level. All I know is my own experience with them.

Vitamin D does cause calcium problems for me. In my case the MK-4 variant of K2 helps this (MK-7 made things worse).

Vitamin A has also helped me with calcium issues from vitamin D, but it didn't solve the problem until I took MK-4.

However, vitamin A does seem to give me a bit of energy, so I take it some days. It also makes it harder to rest so I don't take it everyday.
 

linusbert

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I'm not an expert and don't how how these vitamins interact at a deep level. All I know is my own experience with them.

Vitamin D does cause calcium problems for me. In my case the MK-4 variant of K2 helps this (MK-7 made things worse).

Vitamin A has also helped me with calcium issues from vitamin D, but it didn't solve the problem until I took MK-4.

However, vitamin A does seem to give me a bit of energy, so I take it some days. It also makes it harder to rest so I don't take it everyday.
what MK-4 are you using?

sadly i cannot tolerate my brand it gives me really bad stomach/esophagus inflammation. most mk4 seams to be extracted from geraniol. maybe i am allergic to it.

i wish there was a source of mk-4 i could use. maybe someone has good suggestions?
 
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I used AOR peak but I don't know if that still exists or where you can get it. I recently ordered a bottle of carlson, but I haven't tried them yet.
 
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Vitamin D also increases the uptake of phosphorus, which is antagonistic to calcium.

Vitamin A in high amounts can antagonize vitamin D, calcium too.

High calcium in blood serum may be from loss of it from bone.

I've personally had extreme anxiety symptoms from low calcium and higher phosphorus.
See this is what I don't understand. I read that phosphorous is agonistic to calcium, in that it helps absorption and utilization of it. Not necessarily that it increases blood levels ofc, if anything it seems it would lower it.. but make more use of it. Could that be what they mean by antagonistic?

And what you're saying about Vitamin A in high amounts is exactly what I thought was the case originally... meaning that antagonizing Vitamin D and calcium would mean lowering blood levels of them, right? But everything I read about Vitamin A lately says the opposite.. that any high levels of Vitamin A at all, increases blood levels of calcium. And in fact people with Hypervitaminosis A end up toxic and in the hospital or in danger, mostly due to high blood calcium levels.

This all just doesn't make sense to me. The only thing I can think of is that magnesium and probably yes vitamin K, and it's several forms, (as well as enough Vit D to fully meet the A : D ratio) play an enormous part in just how much Vitamin A sends into your blood (via your bones I guess?)... be it a little or a lot.

And maybe that's the only reason why so many of these websites and articles on one hand often say to take more calcium with Vitamin A - like why would that be the case if one of the dangers is too hypercalcemia? And then on the other hand, tell you that it causes high calcium levels, on it's own, as one of the risks.

Understand my meaning?
 
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I'm not an expert and don't how how these vitamins interact at a deep level. All I know is my own experience with them.

Vitamin D does cause calcium problems for me. In my case the MK-4 variant of K2 helps this (MK-7 made things worse).

Vitamin A has also helped me with calcium issues from vitamin D, but it didn't solve the problem until I took MK-4.

However, vitamin A does seem to give me a bit of energy, so I take it some days. It also makes it harder to rest so I don't take it everyday.
Might I ask what problems it causes for you, and what MK-4 K does to give you relief? I'm not entirely sure I've tried the MK-4 but you've definitely made me curious.

It's weird because Vitamin A seems to reduce my energy, and relax me similarly to how magnesium used to (and generally doesn't anymore). The energy that vitamin D and calcium give me even to the point of being manic sometimes. Vitamin K MK-7 used to help this, now it doesn't seem to do anything at all one way or the other. For a long time it just made things much worse for me, and Vitamin A did as well in very much the same ways.

The only thing that seemed to change any of this was working on my bile and gallbladder issues... which obviously means I wasn't absorbing them correctly before. But now that I am a bit better, I'm suffering from these familiar issues again, and trying to figure out how the balance works (and failing miserably).

But vitamin K2 still makes me feel worse or no difference, Vitamin A... Idk I just can't figure it out. Vitamin D makes me suffer from the usual issues that any amount of calcium does. Phosphorous actually makes me feel better.. or did for a little while, alongside choline and inositol. Magnesium... idk, seems like it doesn't really do anything anymore.

My tests for magnesium were ever so slightly elevated the last couple of times though, so ofc that's probably not helping anything. But even after not taking it for a while, and starting it up again it does very little for me. Even as a laxitive. Small dose, large dose.. doesn't seem to change anything. Used to really relax me, now I may as well not be taking it.
 

Crux

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And in fact people with Hypervitaminosis A end up toxic and in the hospital or in danger, mostly due to high blood calcium levels.
The reasons for hypercalcemia are many. Hypervitaminosis A is one, as is excess vitamin D.
You can have high calcium in blood and osteoporosis at the same time.

Some people tolerate higher doses of preformed vitamin A, depending on absorption , needs, etc. If someone has liver or kidney disease, fat soluble nutrients can build up and become toxic.

I don't know how much you take, especially preformed vitamin A. Have you had blood serum A measured ?

https://www.ccjm.org/content/89/2/9... of vitamin A,and increased risk of fractures.

Phosphorus and calcium are the main components of bone. Both are essential. Excess phosphorus can bind calcium and force them into soft tissues and vessels.

One hormone, PTH, formed in the parathyroid glands, if not functioning well, can produce excess PTH and increase calcium absorption. Elevated PTH can cause hypercalcemia, low phosphorus, and excess active vitamin D.
Elevated PTH may signal hyperparathyroidism.

If phosphorus makes you feel better and calcium makes you feel poorly, It may be a good idea to have PTH , calcium , phosphorus, vitamin A and D measured.

If magnesium Is high, that can signal kidney disease. ( It can also signal hypoparathyroidism. )

Do you have a practitioner ?
 
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It may be a good idea to have PTH , calcium , phosphorus, vitamin A and D measured.
Yes, it sounds like having a parathyroid test in particular (PTH) be a good idea, along with the minerals and vitamins.

@DFams
Vitamin D made me have huge sleeping problems, along with some unpleasant digestive problems, with turning everything to cement, just what you'd expect excess calcium to do.

Your situation sounds strange though as it sounds like you're prone to low blood calcium but still having high calcium problems when you take vitamin D. Might be worth trying the MK-4 if you haven't. IT can be tricky to get depending on where you are as MK-7 is much more common in stores. I felt very keyed-up, tense and unpleasant on MK-7.
 
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Second star to the right ...
But my main question is, precisely how does Vitamin A affect blood calcium levels?
It may indeed increase blood calcium levels, but that's probably because excessive levels of Vit A suck calcium out of your bones and releases it into your blood, which is bad for two reasons: it weakens and brittle-izes your bones, and it allows free-roaming calcium to resettle in arteries and veins, exactly where we dont want it.


MK-7 and MK-4 both remove calcium from your blood and redeposit it in bones and other hard tissues, well away from arteries, etc. But MK-4 has a half-life of 2 to 4 HOURS, whereas MK-7 has a half life of 2-4 DAYS.

So if you opt for MK-4, you'll need to take it several times a day in order for it to be effective.
Could that be what they mean by antagonistic?
'Antagonistic' usually means 'against', or 'enemy to' ....
antagonizing Vitamin D and calcium would mean lowering blood levels of them, right? But everything I read about Vitamin A lately says the opposite.. that any high levels of Vitamin A at all, increases blo
Again, larger than optimal amounts of Vit A will move calcium out of your bones and into your blood stream, which could be constituted as icreasing calcium in your system, but all it actually means is that the Vit A is moving calcium from where it needs to be and is beneficial (bones and teeth), and into your blood stream, where it isnt needed and can, in fact, do considerable har ....
antagonizing Vitamin D and calcium would mean lowering blood levels of them, right?
No, I believe it means that both Vit D and calcium are rendered less bioavailable and therefore fairly useless to your system.


i wish there was a source of mk-4 i could use. maybe someone has good suggestions?
I'm assuming that you react badly to MK-7 which is why you're using MK-4 instead of MK-7, but MK-4 has a half life of 2 to 4 HOURS, and would need to be taken multiple times a day in order to be effective.


MK-7 on the other hand, has a half-life of 2-4 DAYS, and its protective effects are more effective.
 

linusbert

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I used AOR peak but I don't know if that still exists or where you can get it. I recently ordered a bottle of carlson, but I haven't tried them yet.
i did now also buy the mk4 from carlson. and it works for me!
no more weird stomach aching problems.

i dont know yet if it helps me with my problems, but i will take it now for a while and watch what happens.
 

Methyl90

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how is the ratio in the dosage of vitamin D and vitamin K2 calculated? how do you balance calcium, phosphorus, magnesium if I don't know what the values are in the tissues and organs?
 

linusbert

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D : K2 , some say
- 100 IU:1 MCG like 10.000 IU D and 100mcg (not IU!) K2mk7
for k4 its
- 100:10 like 10.000 IU D and 1000mcg K7mk4 .
i dont know if there is any research supporting this.

that is the sad thing, you do not know for sure what your internal balance is, therefore you cannot supply the exact right balance - even with blood tests. (to have a device measuring the internal functional balance of vitamins/minerals probably would be the holy grail of nutrition therapy).
often its better to measure byproducts of metabolic processes to get the actual deficency, like for B12 the methylmaloronic acid. for B6 i think? its cystathionine. for B1 its transketolase in erythrozites.

the rule is too start slow and always give the cofactors. listen to your body, when u get symptoms it probably was too much or the wrong thing.
if u can tolerate, a low dosage multi mineral / vitamin / vitamin bcomplex might help in any case if you supply one isolated vitamin / mineral in high doses.
some things are better tolerated if they are not taken alone. for example when i take high b6 alone in the morning i will become a angry psychopath in the evening. if i take the whole b-complex i do not have that problem.

2 more things to know,
- if u take one thing in high dose u will eventually get deficiencies in others, can be in days, weeks, month or even years.
- if there is one deficiency there are others. the body is balancing things out, it always wants a certain ratio of things. for example a B1 deficiency will come with a potassium deficiency, one need to supply both or otherwise risk refeeding syndrom.
 
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Methyl90

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D : K2 , some say
- 100 IU:1 MCG like 10.000 IU D and 100mcg (not IU!) K2mk7
for k4 its
- 100:10 like 10.000 IU D and 1000mcg K7mk4 .
i dont know if there is any research supporting this.

that is the sad thing, you do not know for sure what your internal balance is, therefore you cannot supply the exact right balance - even with blood tests. (to have a device measuring the internal functional balance of vitamins/minerals probably would be the holy grail of nutrition therapy).
often its better to measure byproducts of metabolic processes to get the actual deficency, like for B12 the methylmaloronic acid. for B6 i think? its cystathionine. for B1 its transketolase in erythrozites.

the rule is too start slow and always give the cofactors. listen to your body, when u get symptoms it probably was too much or the wrong thing.
if u can tolerate, a low dosage multi mineral / vitamin / vitamin bcomplex might help in any case if you supply one isolated vitamin / mineral in high doses.
some things are better tolerated if they are not taken alone. for example when i take high b6 alone in the morning i will become a angry psychopath in the evening. if i take the whole b-complex i do not have that problem.

2 more things to know,
- if u take one thing in high dose u will eventually get deficiencies in others, can be in days, weeks, month or even years.
- if there is one deficiency there are others. the body is balancing things out, it always wants a certain ratio of things. for example a B1 deficiency will come with a potassium deficiency, one need to supply both or otherwise risk refeeding syndrom.
This is exactly what I thought and still think ... also based on the experience accumulated over the years ... there is no test that allows us to understand in which district we are in excess or in a shortage ... we are always going by individual attempts and very often the theory does not get along at all with the internal practice of our bodies.

I asked this question because I prefer to take a "megadose" of a certain nutrient with its cofactors ... then I wait days and / or weeks to see what happens.

With oral fat soluble products it is not easy ... I have always had side effects from small mcg of K2 taken individually ... but perhaps with 50,000 units of D it could help tolerance ... not knowing at the moment the situation of my PTH, values minerals (maybe hair test is more accurate?), and balance with retinol and K2.

Liver and kidneys are "fine".
 

linusbert

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I asked this question because I prefer to take a "megadose" of a certain nutrient with its cofactors ... then I wait days and / or weeks to see what happens.

With oral fat soluble products it is not easy ... I have always had side effects from small mcg of K2 taken individually ... but perhaps with 50,000 units of D it could help tolerance ... not knowing at the moment the situation of my PTH, values minerals (maybe hair test is more accurate?), and balance with retinol and K2.
i feel you.

i have different effects from k2 mk4 and mk7 . did you try both forms separately?

i right now take
1x week:
- 30.000 IU vitamin D vegan
- at the same day , later that day, 1TBLSpoon of cod liver oil, that is like 20.000 IU Vitamin A and 2000 IU Vitamin D and 1,5g of omega3 and 70% of daily IOdine
- high dose B complex
- acerola C 200mg
- mk4

every 2-3 days:
- the cod liver oil without highdose D
- also mk4 and 500mg carnitine fumarate with the oil
- also small dose b complex
- acerola vitamin C 200mg

every day:
- over the day mgCl and potassium citrate and coconut watter 0,3 and small amounts of natural salt


(and ... sssshhhh, do not tell anybody
- lots of glucose monohydrate)
 
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Methyl90

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i feel you.

i have different effects from k2 mk4 and mk7 . did you try both forms separately?

i right now take
1x week:
- 30.000 IU vitamin D vegan
- at the same day , later that day, 1TBLSpoon of cod liver oil, that is like 20.000 IU Vitamin A and 2000 IU Vitamin D and 1,5g of omega3 and 70% of daily IOdine
- high dose B complex
- acerola C 200mg
- mk4

every 2-3 days:
- the cod liver oil without highdose D
- also mk4 and 500mg carnitine fumarate with the oil
- also small dose b complex
- acerola vitamin C 200mg

every day:
- over the day mgCl and potassium citrate and coconut watter 0,3 and small amounts of natural salt


(and ... sssshhhh, do not tell anybody
- lots of glucose monohydrate)
Unfortunately I only tried K2 MK7 in liquid form (in olive oil / MCT). I can't find MK4 in liquid form.

How much do you take? do you believe in the toxicity of vitamin A?

I get along very well with fruit sugars, honey, milk, so it doesn't surprise me nor am I baffled by your positive feedback.

But each of us has different needs ... in my case with probable damage to motor neurons (I don't have an official diagnosis yet) experimenting with nutrients is a daily routine 😊👍