Vitamin D3 – the Controversy

According to research, only about 45% of Americans get enough vitamin D3.  Since vitamin D3 is necessary to absorb calcium.  However, if your body doesn’t have enough, it can lead to osteoporosis in adults, and rickets in children.  However, your body does not digest Vitamin D very well, and overdosing can lead to some serious problems.

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Did you know your body makes Vitamin D3 from sunlight?  In fact, the UVB rays from the sun convert cholesterol on your skin into vitamin D.  Afterwards, your liver converts vitamin D into its active form.  However, what if you wear sunblock or sunscreen?  Well, I’ll cover more on that later.  As you tend to wear more clothing, especially in the winter time, and as you spend more time inside, your exposure to sunlight decreases.  As a result, your body makes less vitamin D.  Sadly, this can lead to bone problems in both children and adults.  However, new research shows that a lack of this crucial vitamin can also lead to weight gain, heart disease, and decreased immune function (Scientific American, 2009).

Supplements are not the Answer

As a result, more and more Americans like you are supplementing with vitamin D pills.  Unfortunately, your body has a hard time using Vitamin D from a pill.  Additionally, many are over dosing on these supplements with the idea that more is better.  However, according to the National Institute of Health, taking too much vitamin D can lead to kidney problems, nausea, vomiting, poor appetite, constipation, weakness, and weight loss. Additionally, by raising calcium levels, too much vitamin D can also cause confusion, disorientation, and problems with heart rhythm. Excess vitamin D can also damage the kidneys.

However, there is good news.  In order to get enough vitamin D, all you need is about 15 minutes exposure to sunlight outside.  In fact, this even works on a cloudy day.  Furthermore, you only need to expose your arms.  However, even this can be difficult on a cold winter day.   As a result, if you must supplement with vitamin D, use D2 or D3.   Foods rich in these forms include salmon, herring, sardines, cod liver, tuna, oysters, shrimp, egg yolks and mushrooms.

Digesting Vitamin D3

However, D, like vitamins A, E, and K are fat-based vitamins.  As a result, they don’t mix well with water.  Since your body is mostly water, this can be problematic.  However, your body has a solution.  Before your body can break down and absorb fats, your body has to emulsify them.  To accomplish this, your gall bladder releases bile salts.  These bile salts make allow water to dissolve the fats.  Now your fat-based enzymes can break them up for digestion and absorption.

However, let’s get back to sunscreen and sunblock.  If you remember from earlier, UV rays from the sun turn cholesterol in your skin into Vit. D.  However, sunblock and sunscreen block these UV rays.  As a result, if you’re wearing sunblock or sunscreen while you’re out and about, your body can’t convert the cholesterol on your skin to D.  What’s the solution?  Since you only need about 15 minutes of sunlight, stay out for about 15-20 minutes before you put on sunscreen.

Enzymes, Vit. D, & Fats

Let’s get into some possible pitfalls with all of this.  First of all, your body uses enzymes in the liver to convert Vit. D to its active form, once sunlight turns skin cholesterol into D.  Do you know what chemical performs this crucial task?  In fact, this type of chemical is the only chemical in the body that can do work.  The answer, of course is enzymes.  However, what if you either eat foods rich in Vitamin D3, or like most Americans, try to get it in a pill?  Then you may have to deal with digestive pitfalls.  In fact, if you’re over age 40 there is a 70% chance you can’t digest fats, including Vit D. properly.

In fact, there are several places you can experience problems processing fats.  First, the connection between the gall bladder and your digestive tract can get clogged up by protein.  When this happens, your body can’t emulsify the fats.  As a result, enzymes cannot break them down for digestion and absorption.  In this case, the right protein-based enzymes can help your body clear the blockage.  On top of that, your ability to make enzymes, including those that break down fat, declines 70% by age 40.  In this case, the right fat-based enzymes can help your body digest and absorb these vital fats properly.  This includes Vit. D.

How do we Pinpoint the Problem

At Redmond Ridge Nutrition & Chiropractic, we used science-based testing founded on sound medical principles to locate the source of stress in your body.  This includes your body’s ability to emulsify, digest, and absorb fats.  It also includes your body’s ability to convert vitamin D to its active form whether it comes from your diet or your skin.  After testing is complete, the right dietary changes paired with the right enzyme supplements can help your body work properly.

Are you concerned about bone health, or your vitamin D3 levels?  Perhaps you’re concerned about overloading on supplements?  Are you worried about missing out on work family or fun? While I don’t treat type 2 diabetes, I can help.  If that sounds good, you can contact us one of several ways to set up a consultation. You can reach us on the web, stop by our office in Redmond, WA, or call us at 425-868-0120.

Then I will personally sit down with you and talk about your suffering and how it affects your life. I will even do some preliminary testing as well as Bio Impedance Analysis (BIA). In fact, did you know that both NASA and Cancer Treatment Centers of America rely on BIA? These tests help me determine if you are a good candidate for care. If you’re not, we’ll make every effort to provide the proper referral.


After many years of clinical practice, Dr. Marrone has forged a remarkable career as a practitioner, educator and lecturer.  His extensive knowledge of functional enzyme nutrition has made him a much sought after practitioner.  If you are suffering from health problems that nobody seems to have the answer to, or are sick and tired of the revolving door approach of modern medicine, give Dr. Marrone a call to set up a consultation.


Vitamin D3
Vitamin D3, the Sunshine Vitamin