(Self-Meta) Vitamin D supplementation ~ For and Against (Part 1 of 3)

(Self-Meta) Vitamin D (part 1 of 2)
Jonathan Borba @ Unsplash

**Draft WIP / Work in progress Part 1 of 3**

I hereby present a writeup series “Self-Meta” ~ a self-research initiative for personal synthesis amidst differing sides, opinions and/or sentiments. The goal here is to demonstrate and share, yet not thoroughly replace any existing rigorous research and literatures. It is not intended to bypass further reading  beyond the currently accessible public domain. For those who are new to this initiative, please consider reading the limited-indemnity disclosures and a brief disclaimer below. Live-it-forward, AW

– “Self-Meta” is highly individual, and never suggest anything as concretely “final” of an “opinion” be it however fixated or disclosed by one (N=1) subject, or data.
– Subject to periodical revisions for readability, this is an initiative entirely made from one (1) individual. This is NOT an official “research review”, or peer-reviewed by third party affiliation.
– This is aimed for general but discerning readership only. This disclaimer, in conjunction to the limited indemnity disclosure does not constitute clinical overrides nor intended to replace existing journalism, medical advice or interventions amidst the readers’ current circumstance.

(Self-Meta) Vitamin D ~ the case for and against supplementation ~ Introduction

For many years Vitamin D has been thoroughly praised and is inseparable to human health. However, the many stances between “For” and “Against” ~ specifically on concerns of paradoxical immune and metabolic syndrome response to supplementation (Marshall, T. 2018)  ~ remains undiscussed amidst mainstream views.

In response to the above climate, I (This Author / AW / nutritional-humility.me) present balanced findings from both sides. Including concerns of toxicity, and a general, though not mechanistically comprehensive overview of Vitamin D metabolism. This Self-Meta intends to share and discloses, yet never objectively as prescription for all ~ an anecdote course of action.

WIP, or work in progress; subject for amends to maintain readability. I hereby look forward for any correspondence and feedbacks should my endeavours relates to you; amidst my obligations at rebranding, redesigning, and rewriting of my book and manuscript.

Sincerely, AW.

References cited within this Self-Meta:

As this Self-Meta is a WIP (work in progress) the following references and citations may yet be amended or added with more overtime.

Cliff notes and highlights thus far (WIP)

  • Debates still persist at identifying “what” Vitamin D “is”. It seems to be never as simply concluded as D1 (“seco-steroid” or “Lumi-sterol” form of Vitamin D), plant based (D2, the “ergo”), meat based (D3), inactive, stored or “active” forms (Deering K et al 2021).
  • Therapeutic interventions exist from both opposing spectrums. It is interesting to note that both, we shall repeat “BOTH” stances Pro and Against ~ share the same overarching concern at treating Autoimmune Diseases.
    • The “Pro” Proponent ~
      Those advocating supra physiological dosages most well known being the Coimbra Protocol. At least 40,000 to hundreds of thousands of IU supplementations.
    • The “Against” Proponent ~
      Those advocating complete abstinence, including sunlight exposure (Marshall Protocol).
  • The main argument from those in opposition or “Against” Vitamin D supplementation is :
    • that of supplementation’s U-shaped auto-immune severity response. In short term, Vitamin D ingestion appears to suppress the innate immune system (Marshall, T. 2018) (16:00 onwards). However in long term may, counter to predominant belief ~ raise autoimmunity responses to the point of harm (Marshall, T. 2018).
    • The allegedly adverse counter-interactions of other mineral absorption; specifically as mentioned in a podcast (Deering K et al 2020) ~ potassium, and copper have been raised. But literatures on these appear to be somewhat scarce. At the very least ~  a review paper countering this view (Schwalfenberg GK & Genuis SJ 2015) maintains current consensus that Vitamin D nonetheless supports Calcium, Magnesium, Copper, Zinc, Iron and Selenium uptake. But on the downside also claimed that Vitamin D raise the uptake of toxic industrial metals ~ notably Lead, Arsenic, Aluminium Cobalt and Strontium.
  • Currently, Hypervitaminosis D is clinically defined as the 25-OHD “Calcidiol”  (a step before the active version ~ Calcitriol)  plasma readings higher than 150 ng/ml (375 nmol/l).
  • Trials involving 50,000 to as high as 100,000 IU supplementation ~ Per Day ~  resulted in very few / less than 5% of all subjects reporting clinical calcium toxicity (hypercalcemia) (Holick MF 2015).
  • There are few specific genetic or congenital conditions that may warrant individual variance to Vitamin D sensitivities.
    • “Williams-Beuren syndrome” ~ rare genetic disorder involving calcium metabolism during infancy. One case study appears to suggest reducing Vitamin D and calcium intake to “bare minimum” (Lameris LLA et al 2014).
    • Mutations of the CYPA31 gene ~ affecting Vitamin D’s fate in its metabolism.
  • Common signs of Hypervitaminosis D include
    • hypercalcemia, hypercalciuria, hyperphosphatemia;
    • osteoporosis, diarrhea, vomiting, lack of appetite, mental confusion, polydipsia, and/or unexplained weight loss;
    • Less commonly reported ~ gastrointestinal bleeding (Holick MF 2015).
  • Vitamins A, K2 and particularly a mineral in its close interactivity to Vitamin D ~ Magnesium (Sakaguchi Y et al. 2017) ~ seemingly remain as mediators against the above toxicity symptoms.

<This is still largely WIP or work in progress.>

CKD+IF Training day in the life - shoulders

Course of Action & Contextual background (N=1)

Context and Background of This Author (AW), including prior usage of Vitamin D are disclosed as follows:

  • Nutrition ~ 2+ years overall of standard ketogenic diet then transitioned to 5+ years of  Cyclical Ketogenic with up to six (6) days of Intermittent Fasting 18 hours minimum.
  • Exercise status ~ 2008 onwards ~ personal enthusiast, yet not competitive fitness training background towards endurance based resistance training.
  • Vitamin D habitual intake status ~ Vitamin D 2k to 5kIU as maintenance dose circa approximately 2016 onwards. Increase from 5k to as high as 15kiu as sporadic and irregular supplementations 2017 onwards.
    • Time of intake. Have been taking the dosages during evenings, as opposed to daytime to coincide with fasting windows throughout the day to prioritise obligated productivity without food intake.
    • Have tried both powdered (dry tablet) versions, as well as oil based delivery vehicles. Notably ~ sunflower PUFA oil based, as well as EVOO.
    • On oil based vehicles ~ have used both oral method as well topically on skin application.
  • On May 2020 ~ higher than average reading as per recently disclosed blood panel (175 NMOL). Calcium adjusted reading however appears just below the reference range (2.27) [ref range = 2.10-2.60 mmol].
  • Any attempts to lower Vitamin D intake felt less than “optimal” ~ in terms of overall psychology, physiology surrogate markers of wellbeing.
  • The highest frequent dosages are between 10,000 IU to 15K IU sporadically up to four to five days per week throughout winter seasons. But much less so during summers to leverage increased sun exposure.

Vitamin D & Immune Health, Glycation End Products, mineral absorption competitions.

Given our state of the COVID19 pandemic, at least one definitive randomised trial strongly suggests Calcifediol (the main metabolite, not the precursor of Vitamin D) at eliminating all ICU / intensive care hospitalisation (Castillo ME et al. 2020). Other supporting evidences in favour of Vitamin D can be found for further readings at Vitamin D Wiki (vitamindwiki.com/calcidiol).

In addition, Vitamin D’s other supporting roles outside of immunology ~ namely dietary glycation end products protectant (Owusu J et al. 2020), psychology  (Gracious BL et al 2012), muscle and bone health (Tanner BS & Harwell SA 2015)  ~ all nevertheless suggest pragmatic maintenance dosages. Interestingly, Owusu J et al. 2020 concluded that supplementing 4kIU Daily is less effective at mediating plasma AGEs within first three months of the study, but not until six months of supplementation is reached. Hence this implies there may yet be some sort of acclimatising period and/or dosing consistency required to achieve said protection.

Irrespective, future adjustments are likely necessary due to ageing, alongside other changing confounders. This Author (AW) believes cycling between high and low dosages remains warranted, at least as per seasonal basis and degrees of sun exposure. On summer ~ supplemental is likely reduced. Where as on winters ~ an increase. Maintenance dosages thus far hovers between 5,000 to 10,000 IU per day. This is also taken alongside (proclaimed) supporting  mediators against toxicity. Namely ~ Vitamins K2 (Mark(s) 4 and 7s), Magnesium and further co factors ~ Vitamin B6, Vitamin A and manganese. 

As far as toxicity management ~ Magnesium appears essential as it appears to help prevent hyperphosphatemia events (a marker of hypercalcemia) in the context of preventing CVD / cardiovascular events (Sakaguchi Y. et al 2017).

It is unknown at this stage, or at least difficult to ascertain if there are mineral-to-fat soluble interactions which may prove detrimental. Of particular mention is that of potassium and copper depletion as briefly speculated in a recent lengthy debate (Deering K et al 2021).

The above concludes the interim Self-Meta of This Author (AW) pragmatic course of action. Despite all convictions, all of this certainly warrants for more re-examining, exploration and adjustments as future confounders unfolds.

<This is a work in progress section. Meanwhile, please proceed to the WIP version of Part Two>  

Work In progress ends here. I welcome and remain thankful for your supportive comments. AW. / nutritional-humility.me

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