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vitamin D pillsThere has been an annoyingly large amount of back and forth over whether we should be taking large amounts of vitamin D to compensate for unrecognized deficiencies of the critical mineral.  First, most of us weren’t getting enough, then we were so, don’t worry and don’t take too much.  A new study has recommended screenings, specifically of the serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels, not the active levels, for specific groups that are at risk of severe vitamin D deficiencies.  These groups include the obese, those with malabsorption issues, african americans and pregnant/lactating women.

The study, conducted at the Boston University School of Medicine, includes new guidelines for screenings for levels of vitamin D that should be that should be present in the blood.  Generally a level of 30 ng/mL has been considered acceptable, but the recommendation is that clinicians should aim for a target level of between 40-60 ng/mL.  Many feel that the guidelines of 400 IU daily of vitamin for children and young adults and 600 IU for adults through the age of 70 is conservative because so many people are deficient and don’t realize it.  Regardless of the current guidelines, getting tested to check your level and making sure you are getting the minimum couldn’t hurt.  Obviously, the medical community is still battling this one out and we still don’t have a clear answer.  Until they figure it out, don’t sit around and assume you’re OK.  You’re the one who cares the most about your health so it’s up to you to be sure you’re getting the nutrients you need.