Is Vitamin D the best supplement you can use at this time?
For those who live in Portugal, it is easy to get good levels of Vitamin D in the summer.
In the winter?
While in summer we have a favorable climate to reach good values of this vitamin, in winter the sun appears less and less intense.
The days are also shorter and the probability of a failure increases significantly.
This is where Vitamin D supplementation comes in.
What is Vitamin D?
Vitamin D is one of 24 micronutrients essential for humans, and can be ingested or synthesized by the skin.
While in hot weather it is easy to get good Vitamin D levels, in winter the story changes.
The body produces this vitamin through cholesterol, but it needs sun exposure to do so.
If there is no sun exposure, you need to ingest it through food, or supplementation.
Unfortunately, it is difficult to get good values of this vitamin through diet.
Vitamin D fortified milk typically provides about 30 IU per 100 ml.
The egg yolk?
Less than 50 UI.
On the other hand, salmon, depending on their cultivation, can reach 300/400 IU, and sardines approximately 200 IU.
Basically, relying only on food to get good levels of Vitamin D is not a good strategy and you will see why.
What does Vitamin D do?
Vitamin D influences many processes in the human body.
It is associated with the immune system and a reduction in the likelihood of contracting certain health problems.
It is also essential for bone health and plays an important role in well-being, with low levels of this vitamin being associated with symptoms of bad mood and depression.
As if that were not enough, it is also very important for the hormonal system, with a strong influence on testosterone levels.
Does Vitamin D Increase Testosterone?
Testosterone is one of the main hormones when it comes to winning muscle mass and lose fat.
High levels lead to more strength and muscle mass, low levels lead to increased fat, little energy and difficulty gaining muscle.
In winter, Vitamin D levels drop, after all, the sun goes on vacation.
When Vitamin D levels are low, Testosterone levels drop.
When Vitamin D supplementation is introduced in people with low vitamin D levels, Testosterone values rise.
Vitamin D and Testosterone
In a study with participants 2299, all men, measured the values of Vitamin D, Testosterone and SHBG.
In addition, they also examined whether androgen levels varied seasonally.
That is, they checked whether in summer these values are higher and whether in winter they are lower or not.
Men with sufficient Vitamin D values had significantly higher Testosterone and androgen levels compared to those with insufficient Vitamin D levels.
In addition, SHBG levels were also significantly lower in those who had sufficient Vitamin D compared to the rest.
Finally, the time of year when testosterone levels were highest?
Vitamin D Supplementation
In another study of 54 healthy but overweight men, testosterone levels were measured while on a weight reduction program.
For a year, 31 of them received 3,332 IU of Vitamin D per day, while 23 did not.
At baseline, both groups had low Vitamin D levels (below 20 ng / mL) and Testosterone levels were also low.
The group that used Vitamin D, not surprisingly, saw their Vitamin D levels rise.
However, it was not only the levels of this vitamin that increased.
The group using Vitamin D supplementation saw their total testosterone increase by about 25%, their bioactive testosterone by 19% and free testosterone by 20%.
The group that did not use supplementation did not have significant changes in any of these areas.
The recommended daily dose in Portugal is only 200 IU.
This is an extremely low value (1), especially considering the amount of factors that can influence the levels of this vitamin in the body.
In Germany (2) and the United States (3), the recommended daily dose has recently been changed to 800 IU.
But after all, we are in Portugal, a country with a much warmer climate than Germany.
We don't need as much Vitamin D as they do, right?
In the year of 2005 a study (4) was done to assess Vitamin D levels in the South Florida population.
South Florida, where Miami is the largest city, is located in the United States, and enjoys a tropical climate, with plenty of sunshine all year round.
For this data were collected from 212 people, both men and women, at the end of the winter period.
38% of men and 40% of women had insufficient values of this vitamin.
The recommended doses serve as a minimum value to avoid serious health problems.
This does not mean that they are the ideal doses.
The minimum ideal value in the body is 20 ng / mL, with the recommended value around 30 ng / mL 25 (OH) D.
These values are obtained through analysis, so if you want to know your values accurately, you must measure the levels of 25 (OH) D.
There are several factors that influence vitamin D levels in the body, so it is impossible to suggest a perfect value for everyone.
However, the main factor is undoubtedly sun exposure.
A person living in Sweden needs to ingest larger amounts of this vitamin than someone living in the Canaries.
What dose do I use then?
You should take at least 1000 IU of Vitamin D3 per day, and always with a meal with some fat.
However, to reach optimal values, especially in winter, the intake must be higher.
Between 2000 to 4000 IU of Vitamin D3 per day is an interesting value for most of the population.
You can also calculate an approximate value using your body weight by multiplying your current weight by a value between 20 to 60 UI.
In addition to sun exposure, factors such as skin tone, the use of sunscreens (5) and latitude influence the conversion of this vitamin in the body.
Darker skin tones need more sun exposure and the use of sunscreens reduces the production of Vitamin D in the body.
Finally, you should not exceed 10 000 UI.
This does not mean that by using more you will get higher levels of this hormone.
You should aim to achieve and maintain optimal Vitamin D levels, not excessive and harmful levels.
In addition, these values are for healthy people, so if you have a health problem, you should always inform yourself first about your specific case.
What supplement should I use?
First of all, you should opt for a D3 and not D2 Vitamin supplement, as the body uses it more efficiently.
Then you should take into account the quantity you want to use and the price.
Here are three products with a good price / quality ratio.
You also have the Myprotein offer, with 2500 IU per capsule, but for € 10,99 it brings 180 capsules.
Finally, you have Vitamin D3 from Zumub, which with 2000 IU per capsule and a value of € 4,99 per 120 capsules, is also an excellent bet.
You can also use the code GVIRTUAL and get a 10% discount on your entire order.
Está disponível here.
Whatever your choice, you are certainly well served.
Vitamin D plays an important role in various processes in the body, the hormonal system being one of them.
Basically, in the winter it is easy to drop the levels of this vitamin to insufficient levels, and correcting that will increase your Testosterone.
Hence the importance of this supplement this season.
Not only will it help you gymnasium, as well as outside it, with immense benefits in several areas.
In the summer, although it is equally important to have good levels of this vitamin in the body, you can easily reach them through sun exposure, which makes supplementation in many cases unnecessary.
So is Vitamin D the best winter supplement?
Taking up references
Vitamin D and Testosterone
Wehr E, Pilz S, Boehm BO, März W, Obermayer-Pietsch B. Vitamin D status with serum androgen levels in men. Clin Endocrinol (Oxf). 2010Aug; 73 (2): 243-8.
Vitamin D Supplementation
Pilz S, Frisch S, Koertke H, Kuhn J, Dreier J, Obermayer-Pietsch B, Wehr E, Zittermann A. Effect of vitamin D supplementation on testosterone levels in men. Horm Metab Res. 2011 Mar; 43 (3): 223-5.
(1) Whiting SJ, Green TJ, Bald MS. Vitamin D intakes in North America andAsia-Pacific countries are not enough to prevent vitamin D insufficiency. JSteroid Biochem Mol Biol. 2007 Mar; 103 (3-5): 626-30.
(4) Levis S, Gomez A, Jimenez C, Veras L, Ma F, Lai S, Hollis B, Roos BA. Vitamin D deficiency and seasonal variation in an adult South Florida population. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2005 Mar; 90 (3): 1557-62.