As a chiropractor, I am repeatedly asked about the benefit of calcium and vitamin D supplementation. I thought the following information would be of great interest for many of my patients and others suffering from chronic pain, sleep disorders, and osteoporosis among many other conditions associated with vitamin D deficiency.
Health authorities around the world are being urged to rethink their recommended protocols around vitamin D supplementation following the publication of a groundbreaking study which indicated vitamin D2 and D3 do not have the same nutritional value. Current guidance given by a number of government bodies around the world states that the two forms of vitamin D are equivalent and can be used to equal effect.
In this new study1, vitamin D levels of 335 South Asian and white European women were assessed over two consecutive winter periods. The women were split into five groups, with each group receiving a placebo, a juice containing vitamin D2 or D3, or a biscuit with vitamin D2 or D3.
The results revealed that vitamin D3 was twice as effective in raising levels of the vitamin as D2, with vitamin D levels in women who received vitamin D3 via juice or a biscuit increasing by 75% compared to those who were given D2 through the same methods. Those given D2 saw an increase of 33% over the course of the 12-week intervention. Those who received the placebo experienced a 25% reduction in vitamin D levels over the same period.
This is particularly of great interest to chiropractic community as other researchers have recently uncovered that vitamin D supplementation combined with good sleep hygiene may not only help in sleep disorders but may also be beneficial in the prevention and treatment of chronic pain conditions2. Also prenatal vitamin D supplements have now been shown to positively modify the immune system of neonates, which could help to protect against asthma and respiratory infections in infants3.
The take home message here is the fact that if you are taking vitamin D supplement, make sure it is from the D3 variety as it is much more effective in raising your blood vitamin D levels.
For further information, you can contact our chiropractor department at our North Vancouver clinic or read the original articles at:
American Journal of Clinical Nutrition. 2017 July 05. OI: AJCN/2016/138693.
Vitamin D supplements could help pain management. Society for Endocrinology. 2017 May 24
J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2017 May 16