Vitamin D plays an important role in helping to promote colon health. It helps with bone health and is an important factor in muscle, heart, lung, brain, and immune health. It’s also one of the ingredients in The Colon Vitamin.
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin along with vitamins E, A, and K. The other vitamins such as the B vitamins and vitamin C are water-soluble. It is possible to develop toxic levels of the fat-soluble vitamins because they can be stored in body fat; however, one would need to take extremely large doses to reach toxic levels. It is nearly impossible to develop toxic levels of the water-soluble vitamins because they are excreted by the kidneys.
Vitamin D is the only vitamin that can be synthesized by the body. The skin has the ability to synthesize vitamin D from exposure to sunlight. Synthesis in the skin is the major natural source of the vitamin. Prolonged exposure of the skin to sunlight does not produce toxic amounts of vitamin D. Vitamin D can also be obtained from dietary supplements such as The Colon Vitamin. Very few foods contain vitamin D. Vitamin D can be found in fish, eggs, and organ meats. Fortified dairy or bread products are often the most common source of dietary vitamin D.
Infants, the disabled, and older adults may have inadequate sun exposure, while the skin of those older than 70 years of age does not convert vitamin D effectively. In northern latitudes, there is not enough sunlight to convert vitamin D, particularly during the winter. For these reasons, in the U.S., milk, infant formula, breakfast cereals, and some other foods are fortified with vitamin D. In other parts of the world, cereals and bread products are often fortified with vitamin D.
The vitamin D that is produced in your skin from sunlight, and the vitamin D from supplements, has to be changed by the liver and kidney to create the active form. The active form of vitamin D helps to manage the amount of calcium in your blood, bones and gut and to help cells all over your body to communicate with each other.
Vitamin D deficiency that leads to Rickets in children or osteomalacia in adults is extremely uncommon except in populations with unusually low sun exposure, lack of vitamin D in fortified foods, and intestinal malabsorption diseases such as celiac disease. Casual exposure to sunlight provides amounts of vitamin D that are adequate to prevent rickets in many people. On the other hand, low vitamin D blood level without symptoms (also called subclinical vitamin D deficiency) is very common. In a recent survey, over 41% of adults had low vitamin D levels. Subclinical vitamin D deficiency may contribute to the development of osteoporosis and an increased fracture risk. Low vitamin D levels are associated with dementia, asthma attacks, diabetes, stroke and heart disease, high blood pressure and various cancers including colon cancer. Studies have shown that vitamin D and calcium supplementation can reduce the risk of falls and fractures in the elderly. Intake of 1000 IU/day of vitamin D was associated with a 50% lower risk of colon cancer. A serum 25-(OH)-D level of 33 ng/ml was associated with a 50% lower risk of developing colon cancer.
The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of vitamin D for children 1-18 years is 600 international units (IU) daily. For adults 18- 70 years, the RDA is 600 IU daily and for adults after age 71 the RDA is 800 IU daily. The intake can be provided in the diet or as a vitamin D supplement. The maximum daily intake of vitamin D should not exceed 4,000 IU.
The best laboratory test for vitamin D is the serum 25-(OH)-D concentration. The lower limit of normal for 25-(OH)-D levels is 8-15 ng/ml. There is no consensus on the optimal 25-(OH)-D level for skeletal or general health. It is felt that a serum 25-(OH)-D concentration of 20-30 ng/ml is adequate.
You can get your daily dose of vitamin D by adding The Colon Vitamin in your daily regimen.
Here’s to your colon and overall health.
Frank Farrell, MD, MPH, AGAF