Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Vitamins A & D testing ... March 2010

Vitamins A and D are fat soluable vitamins, and because of this, they are easily stored in body fat and so taking supplementation can be a risk. I decided to get vitamins A and D tested before I started taking any supplements for them, and since my symptoms involved the nerves, getting some other key vitamins checked seemed like a good idea:

Vitamin B1 (thiamine) - water soluable and can in fact change hourly based on food and water intake, hormones and other factors. An under-the-tongue saliva test would have revealed this more quickly and probably more economically, but I wasn't aware of such a test at the time. B1 plays an important role in nerve responses and needs to be assessed in all people with hyperthyroidism, an autoimmune condition for which I was still in my critical two-year off-medication remission.

Vitamin B6 (pyridoxine) - also water soluable and also aids in maintaining the nerves; necessary for the absorption of vitamin B12, and necessary for the production of hydrochloric acid and magnesium. Although this vitamin can pass through the body in as little as 8 hours, I wanted to know if I was assimilating it, especially since the vertical lines on my nails reveal that I'm not assimilating my vitamins ... but, which ones? B6 is vital for the nervous system!

Vitamin B12 (cobalamin) - water soluable but the only B vitamin that can be stored for periods of time. Supposedly it would take 6 months to deplete a normal B12 amount, but an imbalance wouldn't show up for about 5 years when the body was beaten with trying to make up for the chemical imbalance. B12 maintains a healthy nervous system as well as providing energy. A properly functioning thyroid helps B12 absorption. For the vegetarian (which I have been borderline for years), getting B12 tested regularly is a good idea.

Vitamin A - a fat soluable, easily stored vitamin in the body. Known as the "eye" vitamin, it should also be known as a vitamin making a strong immune system, helping to maintain the bones and the enamel on the teeth, as well as responsible for maintaining the mucosa. I found this out only 2 weeks ago; if I would have known this, the ulceration in my cheek mucosa could have been helped months ago!

Vitamin D - fat soluable. Because of my rib and cartilage symptoms, this was the vitamin I was most eager to get tested! Also important because I am lactose intolerant and loathe milk; however, I could eat a tiny amount of cheese or an occasional yogurt didn't bother me much, at least until the asthma started, and then I became very sensitive to all milk products. There are a variety of vitamin D blood tests - vitamin D3 (basically a measurement of how sunshine is being assimilated and stored within the body); D2 (a measurement of how vitamin D from food like milk and dairy products is being stored; and vitamin D 1,25 hydroxy (a comprehensive measurement of both vitamins D3 and D2) and this should be the test administered for checking for a deficiency. But little did I know I was given the wrong test .... (more on this later!)

Vitamin E - fat soluable but not stored in the body for an extended period of time, unlike popular belief. E maintains healthy skin and hair, aids in supplying oxygen and works as a natural healer. Since vitamins A, C and E work synergistically, I thought it important to get the Vitamin E test along with the A.

Bloodwork outcomes [vitamin ... my bloodwork ... the accepted range]:
B1 .... 108.1 .... 59-213
B6 .... 54.6 ..... 20-202 *
B12 ... 511.49 ... 200-950
A ..... .42 ...... .36-1.2 ***
D3 .... 57.58 .... 19.90-67 ***!
E ..... 33.8 ..... 11.6-46.4

My analysis of Vitamins B6, B12, A and D:

Vitamin B6 : I think the B6 should have been higher, especially because I was eating an 80% vegetable diet at the time. I realize I had to fast for 12 hours before taking the test but it does seem to be a bit low considering I was REALLY packing the vegies in.

Vitamin B12 : I was actually pleased with the outcome of the B12 test as back in September 2008 I had requested a B12 analysis because of early neural symptoms. Outcome was 386 or 368, and deemed normal by the extremely wide American standards of 200-950. A month later (October) when I was at the Wildwood Lifestyle Center that focuses on nutritional healing, my physician told me that there are actually symptoms appearing when the numbers drop under 400, but this is not mainstream knowledge. Later I was to discover that Europe and Japan do not have the lax standards of America but hold that 500-950 and 550-950 respectively, are within the normal range! At the lifestyle center I was encouraged to take sublingual vitamin B12 drops to boost my numbers, and just over 6 months later, the numbers had climbed to 511!

Vitamin A :
Vitamin A was borderline low, but the testing physician told me not to worry about numbers in the normal range. Hmmmmmm, especially when I've noticed the "normal range" varies a bit between testing clinics even within Korea. [Ergh, but I say this months and months in hindsight: Vitamins A and D are crucial for people with candida to test because the candida shape-shifting bacteria-fungus detroys both of them.] About two weeks ago I got re-tested. I figured numbers had fallen because on my four-month very strict candida diet I have been unable to eat foods that are rich in vitamin A like high glycemic carrots and sweet potatoes, starchy winter squash ... The test of two weeks ago came out at .26 showing a huge deficiency. Since, I've been taking vitamin A supplements along with vitamins C and E because my mucosa is horrible looking and easily swells when I eat foods. I've got to get the numbers up as I have become sensitive to foods like, surprisingly ginger, coconut oil (changed brands and then I was fine) and most oils, and then of course the more mainstream allergenic foods.

Vitamin D : I was completely surprised that vitamin D tested normal!!! From all that I had been reading online, a deficiency in vitamin D plays a BIG role in rib and even cartilage normalcy. I was stumped, and figured that since the vitamins were normal, maybe there was a huge underlying medical problem ... like an autoimmune disease ... It would be 4 months before I found out that I had been given the wrong vitamin D test for analyzing deficiency! In those 4 months I could have started healing much sooner, not run like a injured rabbit to several bone specialists - none of whom even mentioned vitamins - and saved a lot of money while enjoying much, MUCH less stress.

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