Vitamin D and Endometriosis
Last updated: January 2023
Did you know that having optimal vitamin D levels can support you in managing endometriosis?
A study found “significantly lower serum vitamin D3 levels in severe endometriosis compared to normal controls and patients with mild endometriosis.1
The normal range starts somewhere between 20 and 30 ng/mL. But that’s just the bottom of the range according to conventional medicine. Recommendations in functional medicine suggest that it should be as high as 80 ng/mL.
Regardless of whose range I was following, the evidence was clear, I was ultra-low, and that needed to change.
Ways to boost your vitamin D intake
I viewed my options to increase my vitamin D in three categories:
The most natural way for our body to make vitamin D is from sunlight. However, we tend to spend more time inside these days than we do going outside.
Outside, we’re likely lathered in sunscreen, which blocks our ability to make vitamin D.
I know I’m guilty of this. I love to spend my summer days at the beach, but I’m often covered in sunscreen and sitting under an umbrella.
That’s not enough to boost my dismal level of 11 to enter the normal range. It wouldn’t even be enough to maintain normal levels once I reached it.
I can count on time outside for a little dose of vitamin D, but it will not be a game changer for me. I needed more.
Food is typically my go-to when it comes to nutrients, but the reality is very few foods contain a significant amount of vitamin D. So, this is a limited source as well.
Many foods like cereal and orange juice can be fortified with vitamin D, but the quality of it is questionable, in my opinion. It’s not always the form of vitamin D that your body can easily absorb.
I find it more of a marketing claim for the product than an available nutrient that supports our health.
Foods that naturally contain vitamin D include:
- Beef liver
- Egg yolks
- Canned tuna
I eat salmon the most, but that’s not enough to double my vitamin D levels.
I have found supplements to be the most effective way to get a therapeutic dose of vitamin D. I appreciate that it’s a relatively inexpensive supplement and one of the smallest capsules too!
Vitamin D capsules come in various doses – 1K, 2K, 5K, and 10K – so you can select the most appropriate dose. The best way to determine that is to get bloodwork from your doctor to know your current vitamin D levels.
Because vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin, it stores in your fat cells, so you don’t want to take an unnecessarily high dose. A simple blood test, however, can tell you your current levels, and then you can determine the best dose to supplement with your doctor.
When selecting a vitamin D supplement, look for vitamin D3 (versus D2) because that’s the form that is more easily absorbed by the body and the form that was used in the study.
Have you had your vitamin D levels tested recently? Share below if you’ve found boosting them to be helpful with your health.
Which symptoms are you experiencing the most this week? (Check all that apply):