Dr. Larry Norton, of Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Institute, spoke out this morning on the CBS Early Show about the pandemic deficiency of Vitamin D and its consequences. He pointed out that most people away from equatorial areas are deficient because of more clothing, work indoors, less daylight time especially in the winter months, and the use of sun screen in excess.Vitamin D deficiency has received attention recently because of its link to cancers of the breast and colon.
Dr. Norton pointed out that despite the fortification of some foods with vitamin D, there was still a deficiency. He recommended supplementation with multivitamins high in Vitamin D3. He pointed out that recommended amounts generally were too low and recommended at least 2000 International Units daily (the current RDA is only 400 IUs. ). Toxicity, he pointed out, only occurs when intake exceeded twice that amount. He went on to say that he recommended vitamin supplements as the best way of assuring that adults received the necessary amounts for needed effect.
Vitamin D plays an important role in the maintenance of organ systems, and a deficiency may be manifested in forms such as rickets in childhood, and several types of cancer in adults. It regulates the calcium and phosphorus levels in the blood by promoting their absorption from food in the intestines and by promoting re-absorption of calcium in the kidneys. It promotes bone formation and mineralization and is essential in the development of an intact and strong skeleton. It affects the immune system by promoting immuno-suppression, phagocytosis, and anti-tumor activity.
So much emphasis has been placed on the harmful effects of sunlight and the need for sun-block that the public has become brainwashed.
Fortified foods represent the major dietary sources of vitamin D, as very few foods naturally contain significant amounts of vitamin D. In some countries, foods such as milk, yogurt, margarine, oil spreads, breakfast cereals, pastries and bread are fortified with vitamin to minimize the risk of vitamin D deficiency. In the United States and Canada, for example, fortified milk typically provides 100 IU per glass, or one quarter of the estimated adequate intake for adults over the age of 50. This amount has been shown to be inadequate.
The bottom line: Your multivitamin should contain more Vitamin D3 to compensate for the lack of its production in the skin due to inadequate exposure.