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How does vitamin D absorption work?

PeterPositive

Senior Member
Messages
1,426
Maybe it's not the right forum section, but vitamin D3 should be part of my methylation protocol so I guess it makes sense to post it here.

Long story short, I am supposed to take D3 supplements but orally I can hardly take 400IU and then my digestion gets upset. So I bought a D3 cream in order to bypass the stomach and be able to get a higher dose, possibly 1000-2000 UI /day.

I got the cream, started using it and in a couple of days I've got the same digestive issues as when I am taking it orally. Stop the cream and problems go away in 24-36 hours. Start the D3 cream again and the problems come back again! :eek:

I understand that oral D3 needs "processing" from the liver so that it is transformed into 25-Hydroxy-D3. Could it be that the liver is having a hard time processing it? So it doesn't matter whether it is taken orally or transdermally?
 
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Legendrew

Senior Member
Messages
541
Location
UK
I'm surprised to hear you're having problem with D3, I'm currently on 100,000IU once monthly alongside 800IU every other day and haven't noticed many ill effects, although i've heard that different people have tolerances of it. Normally vitamin D is absorbed quite quickly and is either converted into an active form presumably in the liver or is stored in body fat for later use. Have you tried taking the oral tablets while having a meal, I often find this helps whenever I need to take any pills that don't seem to agree with me.
 

PeterPositive

Senior Member
Messages
1,426
Yep, I have tried that. I have also tried sublingual drops which I can handle up to 400IU. At 600 I start getting digestion upset. :(
 

maryb

iherb code TAK122
Messages
3,602
Location
UK
I can only handle small amounts of vit D as well, tried transdermal liquid, oral daily and weekly, just sent off for some cream, I think its related to a toxic liver as are many of my problems including MCS.
 

Legendrew

Senior Member
Messages
541
Location
UK
Yep, I have tried that. I have also tried sublingual drops which I can handle up to 400IU. At 600 I start getting digestion upset. :(

Sorry to hear that, I guess my best advice would be to get as much sun as possible then as sunlight produces very high quantities of vitamin D and would likely be the least likely to give you ill effects. Have you had your vitamin D levels tested?
 

NilaJones

Senior Member
Messages
647
I have had very good results using a terrarium lamp, sold for lizard owners, that produces light at the wavelength used for vitamin D. (It is NOT the wavelength for tanning, nor for skin cancer.)

The lamp plus bulb is about $45 at amazon, or if you have a friend with a pet lizard maybe you can borrow theirs for an hour or two, see how your body reacts :).

If you don't live close to the equator, you cannot make significant amounts of vitamin D from the sun at this time of year.
 

PeterPositive

Senior Member
Messages
1,426
I can only handle small amounts of vit D as well, tried transdermal liquid, oral daily and weekly, just sent off for some cream, I think its related to a toxic liver as are many of my problems including MCS.
Good point, I think I am in a similar boat.
Oddly my bloodwork doesn't show too many problems with liver enzymes, but my digestion is in bad shape especially fat digestion. Did you do any specific test for your liver?

Sorry to hear that, I guess my best advice would be to get as much sun as possible then as sunlight produces very high quantities of vitamin D and would likely be the least likely to give you ill effects. Have you had your vitamin D levels tested?
Thanks, yes the sun is indeed the best supplement :) But right now it's still freezing outside and I tend to get all sorts of bad colds if I spend too much time outside in the cold. The immune system is still running short of juice :)

i believe Magnesium is required to convert all types of VitD, even from the sun, into useable vit.D
Good point. If only I could take magnesium :) My gut don'r really appreciate that mineral in any way shape or form, including transdermal. To remedy the situation I try to have quinoa or millet 5-6 times a week, which are pretty good sources of Mg+

Thanks to all
 

maryb

iherb code TAK122
Messages
3,602
Location
UK
I've just got magnesium injections to try - fingers crossed.
Yes its a major problem compounded when you live in a cold climate - no sun for literally 6 months a year and then - variable.

my blood tests don't show liver problems but I just know its that - like we so often do.
I need to try some liver support/detox but its so hard when you already feel so ill.
 

PeterPositive

Senior Member
Messages
1,426
I've just got magnesium injections to try - fingers crossed.
Yes its a major problem compounded when you live in a cold climate - no sun for literally 6 months a year and then - variable.

my blood tests don't show liver problems but I just know its that - like we so often do.
I need to try some liver support/detox but its so hard when you already feel so ill.
So true. Have you tried with herbs such as silymarin or desmodium? They can support liver function and help detox.
 

maryb

iherb code TAK122
Messages
3,602
Location
UK
I did try milk thistle a few years ago - since then I've developed major intolerances and my supplement cupboard is so full - don't you just wish we could have trial sizes from manufacturers to save on all this waste.
 

PeterPositive

Senior Member
Messages
1,426
I did try milk thistle a few years ago - since then I've developed major intolerances and my supplement cupboard is so full - don't you just wish we could have trial sizes from manufacturers to save on all this waste.
Amen to that :) I could have saved a fortune and lots of space :rolleyes:
 

xjhuez

Senior Member
Messages
175
I have had very good results using a terrarium lamp, sold for lizard owners, that produces light at the wavelength used for vitamin D. (It is NOT the wavelength for tanning, nor for skin cancer.)

Wait, what? Optimal wavelength for Vitamin D production is 290 to 300 nm, which is UVB. I believe this does damage the skin.
 

maryb

iherb code TAK122
Messages
3,602
Location
UK
Just got some recent results back for Vitamin D levels:(

Vit D - 47 nmol/L (19ug/L) ref range 75 - 200nmol/L (30-80ug/L)
 

maryb

iherb code TAK122
Messages
3,602
Location
UK
I don't think that is to bad, not super low, could go up a little, but not horrible.

GG
Yes but I've been supplementing since last September!!!
Obviously not enough - I have osteoporosis as well so a double worry.
 

PennyIA

Senior Member
Messages
728
Location
Iowa
Right. But NilaJones said that the lamp doesn't harm the skin - my point is that it does.
I would think the key is that it would probably be best in limited time frames. Like my doctor has recommended that I spend at least 15 minutes per day outside without sun block. We know sun exposure damages the skin, but small amounts of it passing through is needed for D3. If you can't get it outside, then it's a possibility, but should be used carefully to ensure that you don't cause serious long term issues - like skin cancer.

I have osteopenia as well as chronic vitamin d deficiency. Thankfully I tolerate D3 oil drops pretty well. Now if I could just find a way to tolerate a magnesium supplement. I can only tolerate short epsom bath soaks, which does help my chronic muscle pain - so I believe I am magnesium deficient. But I break out in hives from magnesium oil/lotion and severe gut reactions to anything in supplement form.
 

MeSci

ME/CFS since 1995; activity level 6?
Messages
8,231
Location
Cornwall, UK
I would think the key is that it would probably be best in limited time frames. Like my doctor has recommended that I spend at least 15 minutes per day outside without sun block. We know sun exposure damages the skin, but small amounts of it passing through is needed for D3. If you can't get it outside, then it's a possibility, but should be used carefully to ensure that you don't cause serious long term issues - like skin cancer.

I have osteopenia as well as chronic vitamin d deficiency. Thankfully I tolerate D3 oil drops pretty well. Now if I could just find a way to tolerate a magnesium supplement. I can only tolerate short epsom bath soaks, which does help my chronic muscle pain - so I believe I am magnesium deficient. But I break out in hives from magnesium oil/lotion and severe gut reactions to anything in supplement form.

I use a Vitamin D lamp from the autumn equinox till the spring one. I use it for 8 minutes a day. The advice is to start with a few seconds and see if your skin reddens, and keep increasing the length of time each day/week (up to a maximum, I think) as long as there is no reddening. The distance from the lamp to your skin should be about 12 inches/30 cm, I think (that's what I do anyway).

There is some useful info about UVB lamps here (Europe PubMed Central pdf download).

But quite a lot of us seem to have genetic variations affecting the Vit D receptor (VDR) which may mean that we are less able to use Vitamin D. I have at least three such variations, but am heterozygous for all 3, which is not as bad as being homozygous, I think.