Friday, March 9, 2012

Re-Post from Dr. Sears MD: "Dr. House Calls"

AJ Web Marketing's blog is devoted to bringing you the best Natural Health and Beauty information as we can find.   Here is a great re-post by Dr. Sears on vitamin D and how important it is to our health.

Al Sears, MD
11903 Southern Blvd., Ste. 208
Royal Palm Beach, FL 33411

I’ve been telling you stories and showing you photos from my trips through the rainforests in Africa. So it wouldn’t surprise me if you have the impression that I haven’t spent a minute out in the sun.

But the truth is, the one constant in Africa is the sun. And I just read about another important benefit we get from sunshine.

I’ve showed you how vitamin D is more than a vitamin – that it also works as a hormone. Now we know that it’s even more than a hormone. It’s a gene regulator.
A new study shows that vitamin D binds directly to your DNA.1
And what does vitamin D do for you when it’s bound to your DNA? The newest Journal of Immunology shows that it activates a gene that stops inflammation.
How does this relate to sunshine? Exposure to the sun is the main source for your body’s vitamin D.

In my opinion, this study puts one more nail in the coffin of modern advice to avoid the sun at all costs. Making the recommendation to cover up and stay out of the sunshine about the worst advice you could ever take.

That also makes vitamin D possibly the most important nutrient we know of.
Because of the ten leading causes of death in the U.S., chronic inflammation contributes to at least seven of them. These include heart disease, cancer, chronic lower respiratory disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes, and nephritis.2

The trick is, you need to have enough vitamin D to activate the process. And this is where modern advice is failing you.

Current national guidelines suggest that you should have a minimum blood serum level of 20 ng/ml. But that means getting only 600 IU a day.

Except look what happens when your blood levels are that low. In various studies:
  • People with low vitamin D have significantly more cases of colon cancer.3
  • More than half of people with osteoporosis-related fractured had low vitamin D.4
  • 63% of people with Crohn’s disease still had low vitamin D even though 40% of them were taking a supplement!5
  • An incredible 96% of people who had heart attacks were vitamin D deficient.6
Sunshine is the main source of most of your vitamin D. From there your body makes the two kinds of vitamin D you use.

The problem is, almost everyone is deficient in vitamin D. I’m not exaggerating. One study looked at 1,600 people and found 89% of them had low vitamin D7. I could go on and on. In fact, if you search for “low vitamin D” studies in the PubMed database, you’ll see almost 9000 studies!

My patients do their best to get in the sun and take supplements. But when they come to my clinic, their levels of vitamin D are still too low.
So the next time you go in for a physical, ask your doctor to check your level of vitamin D. It’s a simple, inexpensive test that provides valuable information.

I recommend you aim for a minimum of 2,000 IU of vitamin D a day. If you get your level tested and it’s low, take between 5,000 and 10,000 IU a day from a variety of sources until you’re levels are back up.

The best source is the sun. And you don’t have to be in Africa near the equator like I am to get enough sunshine to recharge your vitamin D. Try and go outside and expose your body to sunlight every day. As little as 10 minutes in the midday sun produces 10,000 units of vitamin D. You feel instantly better.

Eating fish a few times a week will give you a lot of vitamin D, too. You might want to stick with the smaller, cold-water fish like sardines to avoid the mercury in some of the larger fish.

But I understand that some people don’t like fish. Others find fish too expensive, especially if the fish is seasonal. In that case, try supplementing with some cod liver oil. It’s not the same cod liver oil your mom may have threatened you with when you were a kid. Today’s version has a clean, fresh lemony taste, and just a tablespoon full gives you more than 1,300 IU.

Wishing you the best Health, and Wellness

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