Friday, September 17, 2010

Fun Fact Friday - NFG's In Cleveland Without the Vitamin D

I have a couple of couches, and as a matter of fact, have been known to fall asleep on the loveseat on more than one occasion.

It turns out I have a vitamin D deficiency.  One would find that hard to believe, me, not getting enough dairy?  However, it would seem that adult vitamin D deficiency is relatively common in shut-ins and the institutionalized.  And if you don't think working in an office all day is the same as being institutionalized, you need to wake up and smell the soothing green walls. 

I'm not getting enough sun, eating enough fish or liver, and I apparently need to up my dairy intake.  And apparently as we age, and because the American Cancer Society along with the National Sunscreen Coalition have been harping at us about UV rays, wearing sunscreen actually inhibits the body's natural ability to synthesize Vitamin D.

(I'm already sick of typing 'Vitamin D' but somehow abbreviating it as 'VD' might give readers the wrong idea...)

Vitamin D deficiency can prevent your body from absorbing calcium (hypocalcemia) and potassium from the foods you eat, meaning your body will start stealing those minerals from itself.  I can end up with osteomalacia, or 'adult rickets'.  With my BMI, I don't think brittle bones are a good thing.  Apparently, it could also be driving my RLS.  See?  I'm not kicking Lori in her sleep due to suppressed rage, after all.  Proper vitamin D levels could also help prevent certain cancers.

So what then, is an appropriate level of solublized Vitamin D?  From the office of 'Well, duuuuuuh!', the Vitamin D Council suggests that the minimum level is 2 1/2 times that which was recommended by the doctor's office.  I don't know what my hypochondria is going to do with this conflicting data.

All I know is that I've had it up to here with these damn rickets.


MJenks said...

You could have just gone with "ergocalciferol" instead of Vitamin D.

*sigh* I'll show myself out.

Bev said...

Sorry to hear that you're deficient. I'm sure it's nothing a little CHEESE couldn't solve.

Frank Irwin said...

I usually put on sunscreen before a bike ride, but I've been going without it all year. I feel kinda dirty.

Nej said...

I'm a milk addict!!! Was once put on a NO MILK diet by my doctor. No milk or cheese for 6 months. Ugh! I'm not sure what you'd call the opposite of a Vit D deficiency...but I had it. :-)

Elliott said...

Nej, Ewan McGregor was put on a no dairy diet so he could convincingly achieve heroin-addict weight for Trainspotting. What kind of doctor did you go to?

Frank, don't let the sunscreen council find out! I'm waiting for the government to make sunscreen use mandatory. Healthcare reform, you know.

Bev, I'm deficient in lots of ways. But trust me, I'll be eating lots more cheese. Just found out one of my grocery stores sells rennet, the enzyme that converts milk to cheese. I might start making my own.

Jenks - "ergocalciferol"? Which translates to "therefore...something something"? I worry now, because I don't want to end up with 'hypoergocalciferolitis'. I don't even know how many medic-alert bracelets I'd need for that.

Nej said...

I was drinking over a gallon per day, and tons of cheese. My body had so much calcium that it was "depositing" it in my joints. Ugh! You never see commercials talking about the perils of "Milk, it does your body too much good." :-)

Rich Girl Red said...

Aww Elliott, I know how you feel! A couple of years ago my blood work revealed levels of Vitamin D so low it almost couldn't be detected. I thought I had lupus or MS or something fatal since I felt like crap. I took 50,000 units a week for 6 months and got it back into normal range. I cut back on the sunscreen (risky since I'm such a pasty white girl) and feel so much better now. I'm sure you'll turn it around! (BTW, my doc said it may not be the amout of Vitamin D but how your body metabolizes it. Whatever the Hell that means.)

Sarah J. Bradley said...

Hey, since I'm in the habit of diagnosing myself based on no medical schooling at all, I'm going to say that after reading this and all your comments, I have a Vitamin D deficiency! Long live cheese!

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