Could Vitamin D Deficiency Affect My Trying to Conceive

Joan and Donald had been trying to get pregnant for over a year. They didn’t know why they hadn’t conceived, as everything was normal for both of them. With vitamin D deficiency in the news so much, they asked their primary care physician to check their level. They were both low. They started getting more sunshine (luckily it was summer), eating foods high in D, and taking fermented cod liver oil and within 3 months they were pregnant!

Vitamin D protects against these diseases that affect your trying to conceive:

*Polycystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS)
*Autoimmune diseases
*Radiation sickness

Low vitamin D is definitely associated with infertility. Research shows D supports the production of estrogen in men and women. It is one of the fat soluble vitamins, all of which are critical to making your hormones. Obesity, PCOS and Diabetes can all affect your ability to conceive. They are all associated with this deficiency.

A common autoimmune disease that affects fertility is Hashimoto’s, especially when it causes hypothyroid. Check to make sure you are not vitamin D deficient. Protect yourself from known or unexpected radiation sickness by having adequate vitamin D. Radioactive particles can affect your fertility, especially cesium.

What are three ways I can get vitamin D?

1) Sunshine
2) Food
3) Supplement (least desirable; never do alone)

1) Sunshine and Vitamin D

When sunlight strikes the skin you make D. However, latitudes above 30 degrees (California, S. Carolina and Massachusetts) lack adequate sun in winter to make enough. Also, clouds and buildings, ozone and aerosol pollution, altitude and reflective surfaces such as snow all have an effect on making vitamin D from sunshine. Darker skin does not make as much and sunscreen prevents vitamin D synthesis.

Absolutely do not get sunburned. Sunburn is what is associated with certain kinds of skin cancer, not sunlight itself. Expose yourself gradually and consistently to sunshine. This is the most natural and safest way to get vitamin D. The body has protective mechanisms to prevent getting too much D from sunlight.

2) Vitamin D Foods

Fermented Cod Liver Oil
Lard (pig fat)
Water-packed sardines
Egg yolks
Blood sausage

***All sources must come from animals raised in the sunlight and/or consuming their natural diet for adequate amounts to be present.***

Fermented Cod Liver Oil is an excellent source of vitamin D as well as A.  This type is highest in nutrient content, and processed minimally to prevent destroying the natural vitamins. A potential problem with many cod liver oil products is getting too much vitamin A without adequate D.

3) Vitamin D Supplement

Have your vitamin D level checked by your physician, and follow their advice for supplementation. The correct blood test is the calcidiol test. It is also called 25-hydroxyvitamin D or 25(OH)D. Ideal levels are between 40 and 50 ng/mL, often up to 90 ng/mL for those with neurological symptoms.

How much vitamin D do I need?

*3,000 to 4,000 IU per day of vitamin D3 (not D2)
*This is the amount recommended by leading researchers
*This is also in alignment with what we know about the amount consumed by traditional cultures for thousands of years
*Your need will vary with many factors, including your exposure to sunshine and consumption of vitamin D foods

Prevent vitamin D toxicity by getting plenty of the other fat soluble vitamins in your diet. This includes vitamin A, E and K2. Foods that are high in D usually contain them all, plus many co-factors and other nutrients we have not even identified yet. All of these nutrients help support your vibrant health in ways that the wisdom of nature provides. So never take an isolated vitamin D3 supplement alone.

A very small number of people with certain conditions need to be cautious before supplementing with D or consuming large amounts of vitamin D rich foods. These conditions may include liver or kidney failure, tuberculosis, lymphoma, sarcoidosis, and hyperparathyroidism. Get your blood levels checked now. Talk to your health care provider about your specific situation.

Make sure you have adequate vitamin D to support your fertility, and help prevent several other diseases such as cancer, heart disease, diabetes, obesity, arthritis and more. Plus feel better every day. Adequate levels are associated with improved mental clarity, better moods, less colds, and less general aches and pains.

To Your Vibrant Health!

Veronica Tilden, D.O.

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