Nutrients - Vitamin D

Today's discussion is going to be on Vitamin D. But to clarify a few points.  In the present day, most in the scientific community consider Vitamin D to be a Hormone rather than a Vitamin. Also, there are 5 different Vitamin D forms, but we will only really be discussing Vitamin D-2 and Vitamin D-3.  The other 3 are important but really redundant and outside of the main thrust of this discussion. However, let us not forget, even though we say Vitamin, we need to think of Vitamin D in terms of it as a hormone. As you do so, it makes more sense and fits in the mindset that we have developed over the years. The whole Vitamin D thing is a big deal as estimates put 75%  and maybe, even more, of the world's population as being deficient in Vitamin D.  

Over time as we learn more about various things as it pertains to life, we come to understand Vitamin D in general terms. Then it was discovered that there was more than one form and from there a more extensive identification of the various Vitamin D forms took place. The one that they discovered that likely had the biggest influence was the Vitamin D-2. This form is referred to as Viosterol, but the present common name for this substance is Ergosterol. Ergosterol is a sterol found in the cells of Fungi and Protozoa. The substance is extracted from Fungi, Protozoa and then exposed to Ultra-Violet Sunshine. It is by the sunlight, converted to Ergocalciferol. This Ergocalciferol is actually Vitamin D2. Ergocalciferol can also be obtained from some plants. But the kicker here is that Vitamin D2 is actually just a precursor of sorts for the body to synthesis, with the help of sunlight and other factors to produce Vitamin D3. So you can take Ergocalciferol, aka; Vitamin D2, as a supplement, but it just isn't as good as Vitamin D3, as it isn't and the body is not efficient at the conversion of D2 to D3. While D2 is better than nothing, it isn't as good as D3 and isn't the same thing. A huge difference between the two. Another good way to look at this is that the Ergosterol found in the Fungi and Protozoa is much like the cholesterol found in animal cells. They both serve the same respective function in those species. 

Vitamin D3 is thought to have a governing influence on over 3,000 body functions. That list is way too long to list here, so a list of what it doesn't influence is short. Did you miss it?  You are supposed to laugh at this point, as it illustrates just how short that list has been found to be. So the influence of Vitamin D3 is massive and widespread. Ie; you won't function very good or maybe even at all without it. The Vitamin (Hormone) D3 is known as Cholecalciferol.  So when you look at the supplement bottle that you are taking Vitamin D3 from in tablet form, make sure it says  "as Cholecalciferol". This is the form that you would want. If it says, "as Ergocalciferol", then it is Vitamin D2 and is a precursor to help your body to make the  Cholecalciferol that you really need. If you are deficient in some of the other areas of Vitamins, Minerals, Acids, and Enzymes needed to assist in the conversion process, you will not see that conversion being completed, thus leading to a continued Vitamin D deficiency. 

So since this Vitamin D3 is so important, where does it come from and how do we take advantage of it? D3 comes from several sources. It doesn't come from plants. This is why Vegans have a really difficult time getting their supply of Vitamin D3. Normally D3 comes from animal products and since they don't use animal products, makes for a difficult task for them. However, there are claims that the technology has been developed to extract Cholecalciferol from Lichens. But this form is expensive as compared to the other derived forms. Also, there are claims that some people have derived the Cholecalciferol from Mushrooms. However, this claim has not been through peer review, so some consider those claims questionable. But in today's world, the main source of  Cholecalciferol and the most cost-effective is derived from Lanolin. Yes, Lanolin. Lanolin comes from Sheep Wool. What happens here is that they take the wool, wash it and then wash off the Lanolin, then extract the Cholecalciferol from the Lanolin. Then it is dried and put into a form that we can consume as a supplement. I have some good illustrations later on in this discussion, so stay with me. So when it comes to Vitamin D, it is best to make sure you read the label and pay attention to the label as to dosage and sources of the Vitamin D contained in the bottle.

Vitamin D3 has a direct effect on situations like MS, Depression and well, all things Brian, Heart, and Kidneys. What I see in studying all about Vitamin D3 is that it essentially has a high level of control over the "software" in brain function. Other substances have a huge influence over the "hardware" of the brain, but this Vitamin aka, Hormone affects the brain much like other Hormones do, only on a super energy-functioning level. Plus we see a lot of gut issues being directly influenced by the D3, such as gluten sensitivity. Anyway, the list goes on and on along those lines. 

In order for people to get their proper levels of D3 met, they need to be exposed to direct sunlight. In addition, the person has to be eating food high in Cholecalciferol or taking a Cholecalciferol supplement or taking a mineral complex that contains the correct amount of Cholecalciferol for the dosage. However, another one of those however things. You need to realize that Cholecalciferol is an oil-soluble substance. So what they mean is that if you take it with some oil, such as fat, various oils used as nutrition, the utilization of the D3 substance will greatly be increased over just by taking say, water to wash it down and leaving it at that. 

Discussion and Summary.

In my formable years, I was greatly influenced by the Navajo culture. So I was able to observe and somewhat participate in many of their cultural life. I am not sure what other cultures did or of their ways, but in this one, yeah, I do. As it applies here, it has to do with the sheep connection because of the D3 being extracted from Lanolin from sheep wool. Up until the baby boomer years, the majority of the Navajo culture relied heavy on sheep for food and clothing. Since they worked the sheep and in particular to touch on a daily basis, would lead to having Lanolin on their skin and thus absorbed into their body system. The D3 would be carried through via that method. Even though they generally also ate the "King's food" (Biblical, old testament name reference), their minds were generally pretty sound at the advanced ages. Their brains were in good shape, although the rest of their bodies were broken down. They also ate a lot fo sheep meat. Sheepmeat is generally found to be carrying a high degree of fat, especially the older ones, referred to as Mutton. So they would have some fat mixed in with the D3 absorbed and so we see good utilization of their Vitamin D3 levels. For the most part, the rest of their diet was in the toilet, but at least the controlling factor was in order. Now when you hit the baby boomer era, the amount of sheepmeat consumed went down. For the most part, only the traditional type Navajos consume any appreciatable amount of sheep meat in today's world. 

Next is the Middle Eastern cultures. We find them eating Sheepmeat and tending sheep, much like the Navajo culture. With them, we find similar results, those that lived a long natural life, tended to be of good brain function well into old age, even by today's standards.  We see the same patterns with the people from places like India. Then as we move northward into all of Europe and the Russian countries, we wee the same results. Then westward and northward, into places like the UK and Ireland, etc., people that tended and used sheep for their food source, took care of their D3 needs through them. Of course for those with access to the sea fared just as well. So we see both sea access people and sheep access people having their D3 levels contributed to and their brain function was for the most part pretty good shape from a cognitive perspective. But those that did not consume seafood or tending sheep, tended to not have good cognitive function past their middle age if they lived that long. 

Now when it comes to my own family in the past, we had a number of sheep people on both sides. What I have noticed is that those that were involved in herding sheep, lived to be into their late 80's and 90's, with sound minds. Some of the other parts of their body had a rough time, but their minds were strong and clear. Those that were pretty much cowmen, well they gave out or stoked out in their 60's and 70's. An interesting factor in this is when I was in college, I took a Behavior Modification class for the Psychology major, it was a required class. Anyway, we went in and set down the professor started out by stating that they study sheep and then apply that to human behavior. My hand went up, I said hey dude, I am a sheep man, had sheep most of my life and well, sheep and way, you might fool these city people, but you can't-fool me. He replied with, well let's see about that. I spent the rest of the class trying to prove him wrong. I eventually found out I was wrong. I got a D out of that class. 

Fast forward to our day. Most people "live" in an office building, and if they do go out, they cover themselves with clothing or sunblocking agents. So that way they have no skin exposure to the sun, so they get no direct sunlight, they do not eat food that contains Cholecalciferol, and they do not supplement for this deficiency. Then they wonder why they are sick and falling apart. Their brain function is in the toilet, they have diabetes. What? Yes, diabetes is tied to a Vitamin D3 deficiency. In some of the E-Lectures I have mentioned about this or that mineral being associated with diabetes, yes, they contribute to the disease. But what is the one main controlling factor in all of this? Yes, Vitamin D3. In preparing for this E-Lecture I started observing people with the control factor in the observation being the Vitamin D3 deficiency. In observing maybe 500 people I observed the following.  Exercise did not factor in as a cause. generally, they worked indoors, ate on the run and even a poor diet at that, one that contained virtually no Cholecalciferol, pretty much most of them ate a fat-free diet, drank diet soda,  and supplemented for nothing, except for the use of pharmaceutical drugs. The good thing about Cholecalciferol/D3 is that it will build up in your Liver and be stored there. So if you miss a day here or there, it isn't the end of the world. For perspective, you can hold up to a 60-day store in your Liver of Cholecalciferol. So by that same token, you can run a deficit of D3 for a while and not notice it. But run it for long and it will catch up with you. Most people are already short on D3, so the building up an over 60 day supply really shouldn't be a concern for quite a while, if you are consuming D# rich foods or supplementing for D3. But in trying to fix a problem, food experts have concluded that by adding some D2 or in some cases D3 to our food, it would take care of the needs. But it hasn't fixed the problem, helped I am sure, but not corrected the issue of a Vitamin D3 deficiency. 

Here is a curveball, people with dark skin does not absorb sunlight very efficiently. So those with dark skin and suntans are more likely to have an issue with D3 than light-skinned people, at least that is the official propaganda. While in some cases that might be true, but since most everyone is likely to be deficient, that is another discussion for a different day. But if you want to run that argument, then from an evolution point of view, we find darker skinned people living or sourcing from areas where you have an abundance of sunlight. Also, people living in or sourcing from areas where they consume the majority of their food from the sea, we find the dark-skinned aspect acting as a protection from overdosing on Vitamin D3. We see the lighter skinned people in the northern latitudes consuming larger amounts of vegetable matter that contains little or no Cholecalciferol. They also consumed little amounts of food for a D3 source or not tending sheep, for a Lanolin source, so for them, they needed all the sunlight they could get for their D3 needs. Because these people did get some of the D2 sources of Vitamin D, but not the D3. So with the extra sunlight exposure, they could at the very least come close to having their D3 needs met. Keep in mind that this skin color/D3 theory of evolution is just that, a theory. What is scary is that it could very well be true, but happens over many generations. 

So there you have it for a very important aspect to our overall health and a viable solution to it. Thank you for your time and your interest.

Kent King