Importance of Vit D 3
Fighting infections
Epidemic Influenza
Vit D and Total Mortality
Cancer Prevention
Epidemiology of Influenza

Why the sudden importance of

Vitamin D 3 ?


Here is some of the current research findings.


What We Have Learned About Vitamin D Dosing?


Integrative Medicine
Vol. 9, No. 1, Feb/Mar 2010
Joseph Pizzorno, ND, Editor in Chief
The world standard uses nmol/l, while US standard uses mg/dl.
For vitamin D, to convert mg/dl to nmol/l, divide the mg/dl by 2.5.
For vitamin D, to convert nmol/l to mg/dl, just multiply by 2.5.


  1) “Over the past several years, the surprising prevalence of vitamin D deficiency has become broadly recognized.”
  2) Vitamin D deficiency is linked to: Osteoporosis Cardiovascular disease Cancer Autoimmune diseases Multiple
sclerosis Pain Loss of Cognitive function Decreased strength Increased rate of all-cause mortality
  3) “Deficiency of vitamin D is now recognized as a pandemic, with more than half of the world’s population at risk.”
  4) Approximately 50% of the healthy North American population and more than 80% of those with chronic
diseases are vitamin D deficient.
  5) 80% of healthy Caucasian infants are vitamin D deficient. [And the rate of vitamin D deficiency tends to be
greater in African American and Hispanic children].
  6) Those with vitamin D deficiency experience 39% higher annual healthcare costs than those with normal levels of vitamin D.
  7) Suggested levels of vitamin D as measured by 25(OH)D3 is: Caucasians 125 – 175 nmol/l = 50 – 70 mg/dl
 Hispanics 100 – 150 nmol/l = 40 – 60 mg/dl African Americans 80 – 120 nmol/l = 32- 48 mg/dl
  8) The minimum blood levels of vitamin D [25(OH)D3] is 80 nmol/l (32 mg/dl).
  9) Prolonged intake of 10,000 IU of supplemental vitamin D3 “is likely to pose no risk of adverse effects
 in almost all individuals.”
  10) The maximum safe levels for vitamin 25(OH)D3 in the blood is 275 nmol/l (100 mg/dl).
  11) Sarcoidosis patients (and other granulomatous diseases) should not supplement with vitamin D because it increases
 granuloma production increasing the risk of hypercalcemia
  12) A loading dose of supplemental vitamin D3 of 10,000 IU/day for 3 months and maintenance dose of 5,000 IU/day
“is not enough for most people in northern climes.”
  13) The loading dose of supplemental vitamin D3 should be about 20,000 IU/day for 3 – 6 months
with a maintenance dose of  5,000 IU/day. Those taking this amount of supplemental vitamin D3
should periodically have their serum 25(OH)D3 levels measured.

The lab we use to test blood vitamin D3 [25(OH)D3] uses a finger prick analysis:
ZRT Laboratory
8605 SW Creekside Pl
Beaverton, OR 97008

NOTE: Norris Clinic use's this lab and product also.

.Vitamin D Testing Finger prick
The vitamin D3 my family takes is Complete Hi D3, from Nutri-West (5,000 IU):
The primary researcher on this product was Don Bellgrau, PhD. Dr. Bellgrau is a
tenured Professor of Immunology and Medicine at the University of Colorado,
Denver, where he is a Program Leader in Immunology and Immunotherapy at the
Cancer Center on vitamin D3 supplementation. Dr. Bellgrau has conducted
experiments with nutrients/vitamin D and immune cells. He has published in over
100 peer-reviewed articles, including the Journal of Neurooncology, Nature, Clinical
Immunology, Cancer Research, Cancer Immunology and Immunotherapy, and Cell

The vitamin D 3 my family takes is complete HI D3, from Nutri-West (5000 IU)

The primary researcher on this product was Don Bellgrau, PhD.

Bellgrau is a tenured Professor of Immunology and Medicine at the University of Colorado, Denver, where he is a Program Leader in Immunology and Immunotherapy at the Cancer Center on vitamin D 3 supplementation. Dr. Bellgrau has conducted experiments with nutrients/vitamin D and immune cells. He has published in over 100 peer-reviewed articles, including the Journal of Neurooncology, Nature, Clinical Immunology, Cancer Research, Cancer Immunology and Immunotherapy, and Cell Transplantation.

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Fighting infections with vitamin D


Nature Medicine April 2006, 12(4): 388 - 390
Michael Zasloff The author is in the Departments of Surgery and Pediatrics, Georgetown University School of Medicine, Washington, DC



  1) It has been known for more than a century that sunlight can treat tuberculosis.
  2) In 1895, Niels Finsen of Denmark effectively treated tuberculosis with exposure to high-intensity light produced
from an electric arc lamp. This phototherapy “cured or substantially improved the disease in about 95% of affected
people, and by the 1920s sun exposure for the treatment of pulmonary tuberculosis had become routine.”
  3) Sunlight effectively treats tuberculosis because it produces vitamin D, which in turn produces a microbe-
fighting peptide.
  4) Treating tuberculosis with sunshine was so effective that its discoverer was awarded the Nobel Prize in 1903.
  5) Sunlight helps us battle tuberculosis and other microbes “by stimulating the synthesis of vitamin D, [which]
 upregulates the expression of a microbe-fighting peptide.”
  6) Vitamin D stimulates the synthesis of the potent antimicrobial peptide called LL-37 in skin and in circulating
phagocytic cells that make up the innate immune response. This improves the immune response.
  7) Macrophages [innate immune response] more effectively kill tuberculosis after they are exposed to vitamin D3.
  8) American blacks are particularly susceptible to infection by tuberculosis because they have substantially lower
serum vitamin D levels than whites, as a result of the greater UV shielding afforded by their skin's higher melanin
content. Treatment with vitamin D3 should augment the microbicidal capacity of monocytes in blacks.
  9) “We currently base vitamin D requirements on amounts required to sustain optimal health of our skeleton.
 The studies reported here suggest that optimal functioning of our innate immune system might require more vitamin D.”
  10) “Perhaps in the future we might be able to treat or prevent certain infectious diseases with safe and inexpensive
substances that induce expression of endogenous antimicrobial peptides.”
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RE: Epidemic Influenza and Vitamin D

Epidemiology and Infection

October 2007, Vol. 135, No. 7, pp. 1095-1098




  1) “There is an epidemic of vitamin D insufficiency in the United States, the public health impact of this observation
could be great.”
  2) “The occurrence of the common cold and influenza shows clear seasonality. The cold and influenza season
corresponds to the season of vitamin D insufficiency.”
  3) “The lack of vitamin D during the winter may be a ‘seasonal stimulus’ to the infectivity of the influenza virus.”
  4) “Vitamin D is produced in the skin when sunlight is absorbed. Thus, vitamin D levels, or serum
25-hydroxyvitamin D (25-OHD), fluctuate seasonally.”
  5) Vitamin D has important functions in the immune system, specifically the innate immune system.
  6) Over a 3-year period, taking 800 IU of vitamin D3 reduced the incidence of colds and flu's by 70%.
Taking 2,000 IU of vitamin D3 reduced the incidence of colds and flu's to nearly zero (only one case out of 104 users).
  7) “Vitamin D supplementation, particularly at higher doses, may protect against the ‘typical’
winter cold and influenza.”
  8) “The physiological basis of the protective effect of vitamin D lies in its ability to stimulate innate immunity
 and to moderate inflammation.”
  9) “These reports provide a rationale for vitamin D supplementation in the prevention of colds and influenza.”
  10) Only vitamin D3 is bioactive; vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) “is not vitamin D but a less potent vitamin D
 analogue that plays no role in normal human physiology.”
  11) “Physiological doses [800 – 2,000 IU / day] of vitamin D prevent many viral respiratory infections.”
  12) “It is also reasonable to postulate that pharmacological doses of vitamin D may be effective adjuvants in
a breathtakingly large number of life-threatening infections.”
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Vitamin D Supplementation and Total Mortality
A Meta-analysis of Randomized Controlled Trials

Archives of Internal Medicine
September 10, 2007;167:1730-173
Philippe Autier, MD; Sara Gandini, PhD



  1) “Low vitamin D status could be associated with higher mortality from life-threatening conditions including
cancer, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes mellitus that account for 60% to 70% of total mortality in
 high-income countries.”
  2) Vitamin D supplements are associated with decreases in total mortality rates.
  3) UV-B radiation is between wavelengths 280-315 nm. UV-A radiation is between wavelengths 315-400 nm.
  4) UV-B radiation reduces more rapidly than UV-A radiation with increasing distance from the equator and
 with winter.
  5) UV-B radiation is necessary for the synthesis of vitamin D in the skin.
  6) Vitamin D is also found in oily fish, eggs, and butter.
  7) The physiologically active form of vitamin D is dihydroxyvitamin D3 (calcitriol).
  8) This study showed that 5.7 years of supplementation with between 400 – 833 IU of vitamin D / day
resulted in a 7% decrease in all cause mortality over that period of time.
  9) Calcium supplements did not reduce all cause mortality, it was only the vitamin D that did so.
  10) The intake of ordinary doses of vitamin D supplements is associated with decreases in total mortality rates.
  11) Vitamin D is important in calcium and phosphorus homeostasis, bone health, cancer, cardiovascular disease,
diabetes, some infectious diseases, multiple sclerosis, and type-2 diabetes mellitus.
  12) In this study,” individuals who supplemented with vitamin D had a statistically significant 7% reduction
in mortality from any cause, and the reduction was 8% for those who supplemented for at least 3 years.”
  13) Vitamin D influences both incidence and survival of cancer.
  14) Vitamin D has been shown to be critical for innate immunity and the production of antibiotic peptides,
and thus deficiency could contribute to diseases such as tuberculosis.
  15) “As a species, we do not get as much sun exposure as we used to, and dietary sources of vitamin D are minimal.”
  16) Given the high probability of benefit for at least some of the many conditions that have been associated
with vitamin D deficiency, and the low likelihood of harm, it seems prudent that physicians suggest supplementation.
  17) “An individual with minimal sun exposure (e.g. a nursing home resident) may require 1000 to 2000
IU/d to achieve levels of 30 to 40 ng/mL.”
  18) “Ideally, the form of vitamin D used should be cholecalciferol (vitamin D3) rather than
ergocalciferol (vitamin D2), which may not be as effective
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Vitamin D for Cancer Prevention: Global Perspective

Annals of Epidemiology

Volume 19, Issue 7, July 2009, Pages 468-483

Cedric F. Garland Dr PH, Edward D. Gorham MPH, PhD,

Sharif B. Mohr MPH, Frank C. Garland PhD.

This article has 144 references.



  1) Higher serum levels of vitamin D3 are associated with substantially lower incidence rates of colon, breast, ovarian,
renal, pancreatic, aggressive prostate and other cancers.
  2) Raising the minimum year-around serum vitamin D3 level to 40 to 60 ng/mL (100–150 nmol/L) would prevent
approximately 58,000 new cases of breast cancer and 49,000 new cases of colorectal cancer each year,
and three fourths of deaths from these diseases in the US and Canada. This would also reduce fatality rates of
patients who have breast, colorectal, or prostate cancer by half.
  3) Raising serum vitamin D3 level 40 to 60 ng/mL would require supplementation with about 2,000 IU of
vitamin D3 per day. “There are no unreasonable risks from intake of 2,000 IU per day of vitamin D3.”
  4) High sun exposure reduces both the incidence of and mortality from breast and prostate cancers.
  5) Higher sun exposure in childhood and adolescence reduce the lifetime incidence of prostate cancer by about 50%.
  6) “Approximately 220,149 new cases of breast cancer and 254,105 new cases of colorectal cancer would
be prevented annually in the world by raising serum vitamin D3 concentrations to approximately 40 to 60 ng/mL,
which is, in general, associated with oral intake of 2,000 IU of vitamin D3 per day.”
  7) Vitamin D3 serum level of 40 to 60 ng/mL would prevent three fourths of deaths from breast and
colorectal cancer in the US and Canada. [Wow!]
  8) There are ten separate mechanisms by which vitamin D3 and calcium reduce cancer incidence and mortality.
  9) Preventing the spread of cancerous cells is dependent upon intercellular adherence. Intercellular adherence
 is requires extracellular calcium ions. Low calcium levels thus allow the spread of cancer cells.
  10) Intercellular adherence is also degraded by omege-6 vegetable oils. “Unfortunately, omega-6 linoleic acid
is the most common polyunsaturated fatty acid consumed in the Western diet (median intake 15 g/day).”
  11) The “National Academy of Sciences–Institute of Medicine recommended adequate intake [of vitamin D3]
should be revised upward to at least 2,000 to 4,000 IU/day. Adoption of the new adequate intake [of vitamin D3]
would substantially reduce the incidence of cancer, and there are no consistently established adverse effects
of vitamin D3 intake in the range below 4,000 IU/day that would be sufficient to justify a lower adequate intake 
of [vitamin D3].”
  12) “The upper limit [of vitamin D3] should be increased to at least 5,000 IU/day, based on expected benefits
compared to anticipated minor risks.” Some knowledgeable vitamin D scientists and physicians have recommended a
higher upper limit of 10,000 IU/day.
  13) Vitamin D3 (cholecalciferol) should replace vitamin D2 (ergocalciferol) because vitamin D3 is more effective in
  14) “The preventive effects of higher vitamin D3 intake have led 16 vitamin D scientists and concerned physicians
in the US and Canada to disseminate a call to action recommending universal daily intake of 2000 IU of vitamin D3.”
  15) Low vitamin D levels also increase the incidence of myocardial infarction, type-1 diabetes, multiple sclerosis,
 and falls.
  16) “Populations living at or higher than 30° latitude in either the northern or southern hemisphere,
or who have a mainly indoor lifestyle, should be considered at high risk of breast, colon, ovarian, and many
other types of cancer as a result of highly prevalent vitamin D deficiency.”
  17) Vitamin D should be used to “reduce incidence and mortality from cancer, and substantially increase treatment

For a couple of years now I have been recommending that most of us and our
patients supplement with 2,000 IU vitamin D3 per day. This article certainly
supports that recommendation

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On the Epidemiology of Influenza

Virology Journal

February 25, 2008, Volume 5

John J Cannell, Michael Zasloff, Cedric F Garland, Robert Scragg

 and Edward Giovannucci




  1) Vitamin D upregulates the endogenous antibiotics of innate immunity and suggest that the incongruities
 in flu behavior may be secondary to the epidemiology of vitamin D deficiency.
  2) Recently epidemiological studies question vaccine effectiveness because “influenza mortality and hospitalization
rates for older Americans significantly increased in the 80's and 90's, during the same time that influenza vaccination
rates for elderly Americans dramatically increased.”
  3) A 2006 study stated “We found no evidence of reduction in influenza-related mortality in the last 15 years,
despite the concomitant increase of influenza vaccination coverage from ~10% to ~60%.”
  4) The seasonality of influenza indicates that it is controlled by a “seasonal stimulus.” This “seasonal stimulus”
may be seasonal impairments of the antimicrobial peptide systems crucial to innate immunity caused by dramatic
seasonal fluctuations in vitamin D3.
  5) Innate immunity is that branch of host defense that is “hard-wired” to respond rapidly to microorganisms.
  6) “The evidence that vitamin D has profound effects on innate immunity is rapidly growing.” “Vitamin D is the
‘antibiotic vitamin’ due primarily to its robust effects on innate immunity.”
  7) In a 2007 study, 104 women given vitamin D were three times less likely to report cold and flu symptoms than
placebo controls. “A low dose (800 IU/day) not only reduced reported incidence, it abolished the seasonality of
reported colds and flu. A higher dose (2000 IU/day), given during the last year of their trial, virtually eradicated all
reports of colds or flu.”
  8) “Relative – but easily correctable – deficiencies in innate immunity probably exist in many dark-skinned and aged
individuals, especially during the winter,” because of reduced ability to produce vitamin D.
  9) During the 1918 flu pandemic, there were five attempts to transmit the flu to a well person from a sick person, and
these attempts exceeded a combined total of 150 well patients. Methods of transmission included cough, spit, and
breathe. None of these attempts succeeded. [Very Interesting]
  10) In previous ages, flu epidemics spread rapidly despite the lack of modern transport because influenza was already
embedded in the population and erupted when impairments in innate immunity occurred as a consequence of seasonal
reduced vitamin D.
  11) These authors propose individual variations in vitamin D3 levels explain the variations in the innate immunity of the
volunteers who purposefully exposed themselves to the flu but did not become ill.
  12) Influenza mortality has not declined with increasing vaccination rates because influenza vaccines improve adaptive
immunity, and the key is innate immunity. [The innate immune response rules the adaptive immune response: if
the innate immune response ignores an invader, one will not make antibodies {adaptaive immune response}
to that invader How the Immune System Works, by Loren Sompayrac, Blackwell Science, 2008]
“The innate immunity of the aged declined over the last 20 years due to medical and governmental warnings to avoid 
the sun. While the young usually ignore such advice, the elderly often follow it. We suggest that improvements in
adaptive immunity from increased vaccination of the aged are inadequate to compensate for declines in innate immunity
the aged suffered over that same time.”
  13) “Compelling epidemiological evidence indicates vitamin D deficiency is the ‘seasonal stimulus’ [responsible for flu
  14) Lower respiratory tract infections are more frequent in those with low vitamin D3 levels.
  15) Vitamin D3 regulates 1,000 human genes.
  16) A 2007 study found 2,000 IU of vitamin D per day “abolished the seasonality of influenza.”
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