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WHY 74% OF THE UK HAVE SUB OPTIMAL IMMUNE HEALTH
by Dara Winters
So here is an uncomfortable truth. 74% of you have sub optimal immune health because of below optimal vitamin D levels. Forth with life analysed their own vitamin D data to assess levels amongst UK adults and stumbled upon this worrying trend.
So let’s break it down:
Whilst it looks like the average in the UK is in fact in the green, the truth is that sufficient level is sufficient to prevent a deficiency disease such as rickets, but it is not sufficient for optimal immune function. If we take a normal human who spends their time in sunnier climates, we tend to find their Vitamin D levels at 54–90 ng/ml or 135–225 nmol/l which suggests this is our intended level. And even the Endocrine Society and many studies have demonstrated aiming for high Vitamin D blood levels that are above 30 ng/ml (75 nmol/l) provides optimal health.
This is vital for your immune health because at these levels, your first line of defence, the innate immune system and mucosal immune function are performing at their peak. Vitamin D enhances the pathogen-fighting effects of monocytes and macrophages — the white blood cells that we all know are important. Further studies have also shown a therapeutic dose of vitamin D resulted in a statistically significant (42%) decrease in the incidence of colds infection.
So why are so many of us facing sub optimal levels?
Well, we all know we can make vitamin D from sunlight, but from October through to May the sun is too far away for us to make any Vitamin D, even if we sunbathed all day in the cold winter weather. So, our levels start to decline - and dependant on how much vitamin D you consumer from foods like oily fish, liver, and egg yolks – it will keep declining all through winter getting worst in January and February. You will also be at an increased risk of developing vitamin D deficiency in winter if you are vegan or vegetarian, have darker skin, and are elderly.
So what are our options for making sure we have optimal levels. Well, a vitamin D blood test can be taken for as little as £30 with our blood testing partner Thriva. That will give you an understanding of where you are and then we need to supplement to correct our vitamin levels.
PHE recommend 10mcg of Vitamin D a day. Tonic high dose contains 30ug – that’s 600% of the Nutrient Reference Value (NRV) of vitamin D3.
Why do we go higher than anyone else? Well simply put, when you are deficient, you need more to provide restorative and corrective doses and with most of the UK in the position – it makes sense logically. But combine that with the science which shows the average increase in vitamin D concentrations were just 0.78 ng/ml (1.95 nmol/liter) per microgram – you can see why we need to go higher. The chart below illustrates:
The effectiveness of supplementation is specifically down to the dose and with 30 mcg per day we can have the biggest impact on your health and provide a 15ng/ml change which would get most of the UK back to good immune health.
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