I had a routine blood test done recently, and the doctor left me a message on Friday saying that almost all my levels were in the normal range, including my thyroid (a really important one to make your doctor check) — and said that my cholesterol levels were “really amazing.” However, there was one issue she called “critical.” My vitamin D levels were extremely low.
Vitamin D (a.k.a the sunshine vitamin) is very important for bone health, and it even can help with mood and memory. When these levels are really low they suggest prescription vitamin D. My doctor set me up to take it once a week for the next eight weeks, and then re-take my blood test. After that treatment, the doctor recommended taking 1000-1200 IU/day of Vitamin D. This is the one I got (although not for as cheap as it is here on Amazon).
For your next routine bloodwork, make sure the clinician checks your vitamin D levels. It wasn’t as common to check these levels a few years ago, but some doctors are checking it more now because of the press about the deficiency that has become common. This also goes for thyroid problems — they go undiagnosed in a lot of women, especially over age 50, because doctors don’t check it regularly. Abnormal thyroid levels can be the cause of many things such as mood and metabolism issues.
Side note: This new doctor is my first time seeing an OB/GYN for a checkup, and she took her time and was much thorough with me than any of the primary doctors that I had usually seen for my yearly physical exams.
Dr. Oz has a great article on daily vitamins, recommended doses, and why we should take them.
1. A multivitamin – look for 100% daily. I like the Rainbow brand.
2. Calcium cocktail – Calcium vitamins need to be combined with magnesium (to prevent the negative side effects of calcium) and vitamin D (to help the body absorb calcium) in order to get the maximum benefit. You can usually find this in an all-in-one pill.
3. DHA/EPA Omega-3 – good for the brain and cholesterol, it’s an anti-inflammatory, and can even boosts fertility.
Side Note #2: Krill Oil is now becoming the leader of omega-3 now instead of Fish Oil because people are concerned of the toxins contained from the farmed fish.
Krill are similar to shrimp and are located in the cleanest ocean waters of the Antarctic Ocean, free from toxins (like metals and PCBs) largely because there’s little commercial fishing in that area. While nuts and seeds are also a good source of omega-3 fats, they convert little into the DHA omega-3 that is good for your brain and heart.
Fast Fact: Fish actually don’t make omega-3, they get it by eating algae or drifting organisms, so you can also get vegetarian-based omega-3 pills and steer clear from possible fish-related toxins.