Published on April 25, 2022
A review outlines the research on vitamin D and reproductive health among both men and women with or without PCOS
- Vitamin D levels in the range of 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L) have been shown to reduce complications including preterm birth, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (preeclampsia) and gestational diabetes
- A study found that vitamin D level was an independent predictor of reproductive success rates in women with PCOS following induction of ovulation, with the probability of ovulation and live birth increasing as vitamin D levels increased; live births were 44% lower among women whose vitamin D levels were below 30 ng/ml (75 nmol/L) and 4 fold higher among women with vitamin D levels of 45 ng/ml (112.5 nmol/L) or higher, and the ratio of live births increased by 2% for every one ng/ml (2.5 nmol/L) increase in vitamin D levels
- Studies in men have shown a correlation between vitamin D sufficiency and improved sperm count, motility, and increased fertility overall, with a positive association between vitamin D and testosterone levels among older men
Vitamin D is necessary for all stages of the life-cycle, and especially for pregnancy. Numerous studies have found that higher vitamin D levels during pregnancy reduce the risk of adverse maternal and infant outcomes. Vitamin D levels in the range of 40-60 ng/ml (100-150 nmol/L) have been shown to reduce complications including preterm birth, hypertensive disorders of pregnancy (preeclampsia) and gestational diabetes. The Pregnancy Disease Risk Reduction Chart provides an illustration of some of the findings from studies that have compared prenatal and newborn health outcomes to vitamin D levels. It shows the percent lower risk at a given vitamin D level compared to a common reference level of 25 ng/ml (62 nmol/L), which is the approximate average level of the U.S. population.
Vitamin D is also involved in the process of conception, implantation and the development of the placenta, and vitamin D levels in both men and women can have an effect on fertility and the chances of having a live birth. A paper by Várbíró et al. reviewed findings from recent research on vitamin D in men and women, fertility, IVF success rates, and pregnancy among women with or without Polycystic Ovary Syndrome (PCOS).
Vitamin D Deficiency Occurs in 67-85% of PCOS Cases
PCOS is one of the most frequent causes of infertility among women, with evidence that both insulin resistance and vitamin D status play key roles. Among PCOS patients, vitamin D supplementation has been shown to have positive effects on the menstrual cycle, follicular maturation, and endometrial receptivity during implantation of the embryo. A study included in the review, by Pal et al., found that vitamin D level was an independent predictor of reproductive success rates in women with PCOS following induction of ovulation, with the probability of ovulation and live birth increasing as vitamin D levels increased.
In fact, live births were 44% lower among women with PCOS whose vitamin D levels were below 30 ng/ml (75 nmol/L) and 4 fold higher among women with vitamin D levels of 45 ng/ml (112.5 nmol/L) or higher. For these women, the ratio of live births increased by 2% for every one ng/ml (2.5 nmol/L) increase in vitamin D levels. Women with PCOS undergoing IVF also have a higher chance of both implantation and occurrence of clinical pregnancy when vitamin D levels were higher, and vitamin D levels have also correlated with embryo quality.
How Vitamin D Levels among Men and Women Affect Fertility and IVF Outcomes
In women, vitamin D plays key roles the production of the ovarian steroid hormones progesterone, estradiol, and estrone, as well as follicular stimulation hormone (FSH) and follicular maturation and selection. During fertilization, the vitamin D level of the woman facilitates the sperm selection process and influences the selection of the ‘best sperm.’ For outcomes among IVF patients, vitamin D levels are strongly correlated with the rate of success, independently of age, BMI, ethnicity, and the number of embryo transfers.
Studies in men have shown a correlation between vitamin D sufficiency and improved sperm count, motility, and increased fertility overall. There is a positive association between vitamin D and testosterone levels among older men, however this same relationship is not seen in young adolescent males.
Ensure Healthy Vitamin D Levels Among All Reproductive-Age Individuals
Having and maintaining healthy vitamin D levels and other nutrient levels can help improve your health now and for your future. Choose which additional nutrients to measure, such as your 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. With measurement you can then determine how much is needed and steps to achieve your goals. You can also track your own intakes, symptoms and results to see what works best for YOU.
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!