Published on December 8, 2021
10% more vitamin D results above 60 ng/ml were posted so far in 2021 than in 2020. Have your levels increased? How much is too much, and when is vitamin D toxicity a concern?
- Average vitamin D levels posted to GrassrootsHealth participants have increased from an average of 54 ng/ml (135 nmol/L) in 2020 to an average of 61 ng/ml (152 nmol/L) in 2021
- 44% of the results posted through the beginning of December, 2021, were above 60 ng/ml (150 nmol/L)
- Levels in excess of 150 ng/ml may raise the concern for vitamin D toxicity, however, vitamin D toxicity is one of the rarest medical conditions, with a meta-analysis showing no toxicity below a vitamin D level of 200 ng/ml (500 nmol/L) or below a vitamin D intake of 30,000 IU/day
First off, thank you and congratulations to all of the participants (we call them Citizen Scientists) who have contributed their data to the D*action study and taken steps to improve their vitamin D level, and their health!
A preliminary analysis of the GrassrootsHealth data from 2020 and 2021 (through the beginning of December) shows that
- in 2020, 29% of the vitamin D results were below 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L), and 34% were above 60 ng/ml (150 nmol/L), with an average result of 54 ng/ml (135 nmol/L)
- in 2021 (as of the beginning of December), 20% of the vitamin D results were below 40 ng/ml and 44% were above 60 ng/ml, with an average result of 61 ng/ml (152 nmol/L)
- there was a 10% increase in the number of vitamin D results that were over 60 ng/ml, with 9% fewer results below 40 ng/ml
Are Vitamin D Levels Above 60 ng/ml Safe?
We have been receiving more questions from participants about whether a vitamin D result above the scientists’ recommended range of 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L) is too high. This recommended range is for general health, and is based on overwhelming evidence about the association between vitamin D and the reduced risk of many diseases including bone diseases (rickets, osteomalacia, and osteoporosis), multiple sclerosis, diabetes, cancer, and many others.
There is evidence that levels above 60 ng/ml provide additional benefit, especially for breast cancer prevention and treatment of autoimmune diseases. GrassrootsHealth considers levels between 60 and 100 ng/ml (150-250 nmol/L) to be safe and in the high end of a normal range.
When Could Vitamin D Toxicity be a Concern?
We do not currently have data to support any additional health benefit of having a vitamin D level above 100 ng/ml. Levels in excess of 150 ng/ml raise the concern for vitamin D toxicity which is most frequently diagnosed when levels are over 200 ng/ml (500 nmol/L), though not everyone who reaches that level experiences toxicity.
Vitamin D toxicity occurs when high vitamin D levels (typically, over 200 ng/ml) cause high calcium levels, called hypercalcemia. Symptoms of hypercalcemia include loss of appetite, feeling very thirsty, weight loss, constipation or diarrhea, abdominal pain, musculoskeletal pain, or feeling sick, confused, or tired.
According to a Mayo Clinic publication, “There is enough evidence that vitamin D toxicity is one of the rarest medical conditions and is typically due to intentional or inadvertent intake of extremely high doses of vitamin D (usually in the range of >50,000 – 100,000 IU/day for months to years) without monitoring for hypercalcemia.” In fact, a meta-analysis of 15 clinical trials found no toxicity below a vitamin D level of 200 ng/ml (500 nmol/L) or below a vitamin D intake of 30,000 IU/day.
In an upcoming post, we will address another question we have been receiving from participants whose vitamin D level is higher than what they’d like it to be… How can I lower my vitamin D level?
What is YOUR Vitamin D Level? Have You Tested This Year?
Having and maintaining healthy vitamin D levels and other nutrient levels can help improve your health now and for your future. Choose which to measure, such as your vitamin D, omega-3s, and essential minerals including magnesium and zinc, by creating your custom home test kit today. Take steps to improve the status of each of these measurements to benefit your overall health. You can also track your own intakes, symptoms and results to see what works best for YOU.
Enroll and test your levels today, learn what steps to take to improve your status of vitamin D (see below) and other nutrients and blood markers, and take action! By enrolling in the GrassrootsHealth projects, you are not only contributing valuable information to everyone, you are also gaining knowledge about how you could improve your own health through measuring and tracking your nutrient status, and educating yourself on how to improve it.
What Does it Take YOU to Get Your D to 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L)?
Did you know your health could be greatly affected by making sure you have a vitamin D level of at least 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L)? Help us help you.
STEP 1 - Do you know what your vitamin D level is? If not, be sure to test today to find out.
STEP 2 – Determine your target level. Are you at your target level? Experts recommend a level of at least 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L).
STEP 3 – Need to boost your level? Use the D*calculator to see how much vitamin D it may take to reach your target. Opt for the Loading Dose for a quicker boost.
STEP 4 – Optimize how your body absorbs and utilizes vitamin D with co-nutrients and these simple steps.
STEP 5 – Re-Test! This is an important step to make sure you have reached your target level, and to ensure you are not taking too much! Re-testing after 3-4 months is recommended.
STEP 6 – Adjust, Repeat…
Give your immune system the nutrients it needs to support a healthy you and protect yourself from unnecessary diseases, especially COVID-19.
The first Randomized Controlled Trial on vitamin D and COVID-19 has shown a 96% lower risk of ICU admission for those receiving vitamin D (as 25(OH)D to quickly boost vitamin D blood levels) along with the standard treatment, compared to those receiving standard treatment alone.
These results support many previous observational studies showing a relationship between vitamin D levels and intake and COVID-19 severity.
GrassrootsHealth Nutrient Research Institute has launched the new Immune Boost project with the use of our myData-myAnswers nutrient health system that nearly 15,000 people are already using for their health. Specific markers that influence immune health are suggested for testing as part of this project including:
- Vitamin D
- Omega-3 Index
- Essential elements magnesium, selenium, and zinc
Our goal is to demonstrate how one can use the Nutrient Research Model established by Dr. Robert Heaney to show the effect of vitamin D serum levels of at least 40 ng/ml (100 nmol/L) on risk reduction for all ethnicities in the population. Status and intake of other nutrients will also be analyzed for any type of relationship to immune status and symptom severity. Join the project today!
Please let us know if you're interested in helping sponsor this project.
Through GrassrootsHealth Nutrient Research Institute, you can also test your essential elements magnesium, copper, zinc and selenium, toxins such as lead, mercury and cadmium, as well as your omega-3 levels, inflammation levels and thyroid stimulating hormone (TSH) level. Find out your levels today! Log on to the test selection page (click the link below) to get your tests and see for yourself if your levels can be improved.
Make sure you track your results before and after, about every 6 months!
How can I track my nutrient intake and levels over time?
To help you track your supplement use and nutrient levels, GrassrootsHealth has created the Personal Health Nutrient Decision System called
For each specific supplement, you can track what days you take it, how much, and many other details. This will help you know your true supplemental intake and what patterns of use work for you to reach and maintain optimum nutrient levels. Check it out today!