Count, the important thing for health isn’t how much Vit. D you ingest but how high your serum levels are. That said, 10,000 IU/day is a very high amount to ingest. (Even more so if you get regular sun). I’d urge that before you go too long with your regimen to make an appointment with your doctor and have a blood test taken to check your serum levels of Vit. D. It’ll probably be that you could get optimal levels (around 50 nmol/L; slightly less if younger, slightly more if older) with much lower daily dosages. And it’s possible that you are at a level which is not very healthy. Check the report I linked to HERE as well if it interests you.
If you’re determined to do it without scientific evidence, the question is why you would waste money on Vit. D pills at all. I mean, the only reason any of us have to be concerned with Vit. D is just the scientific evidence behind it.
Where I live, I don’t get any vitamin D from the Sun at this time of the year. I estimate what I get from the Sun and I supplement that to 10,000 IU per day on average. It’s not that I reject scientific results, but I don’t agree with the interpretation given to some results suggesting that 50 nmol/l could be optimal. Take e.g. a result cited by the IOM. In a study a huge dose of vitamin D was given to elderly persons (one off dose of 600,000 IU, if I remember correctly) and then one had observed that the incidents of falls increased sligtly. This was barely statistically significant, so it doesn’t even mean that there is an effect at all. To then say that not only the effect is real, but that this also implies that the serum dose reached by these persons of about 100 nmol/l is a good indicatior of what is above optimal for the average person, is a big stretch if you ask me.
Of course, I’m not a medical expert, but unlike in case of e.g. Global Warming, in this case there a re a lot of real (not fake) experts who have strongly disagreed with the approach taken by the IOM. This includes the previous IOM pannel, people like Dr. Vieth and many other experts. I find their arguments a lot more compelling than the rather weak arguments in favor of low doses and low serum levels. Note that the IOM has even disagreed with some of the authors that they cited., see here:
The IOM was interested in a study Amling had published, in which he had measured bone quality and blood levels of vitamin D in the bodies of 675 people who had died in good health (for example, in car accidents and suicides)4. Amling concluded that an ideal level for the general population would be 75 nmol/L because everyone above that level had strong bones, and they therefore weren’t at a high risk of fractures.
The IOM’s mandate was to set the levels that protect most people, but not all. It found that Amling’s data supported a 50 nmol/L threshold (which had been suggested elsewhere in the literature) because at that level, only 1% of people in the study had weak bones. But Amling says that the IOM made a mathematical mistake: it should have looked at the risk of weak bones in people at or above a certain level, not in the whole population (see ‘Denominator dispute’). Instead of dividing the 7 people with weak bones and levels above 50 nmol/L by all 675 people in the study, he says it should have divided 7 by the 82 individuals with levels above 50 nmol/L. Charles McCulloch, a biostatistician at the University of California, San Francisco, who has no vested interest in vitamin-D thresholds, agrees: the panel should have found that 8.5% of the population above 50 nmol/L had weak bones, and therefore according to its goal of allowing no more than 2.5% of the population to be at risk, Amling’s data would support a higher level. “I’m very shocked they made such a basic mathematical mistake,” Amling says.
Another researcher whose work received a fair share of the IOM’s attention is Heike Bischoff-Ferrari, director of the centre for ageing and mobility at the University of Zurich in Switzerland. She published a meta-analysis in 2009 that pooled eight clinical trials testing the ability of vitamin-D supplements to reduce falling in elderly people5. In her analysis, participants who took daily doses of 700–1,000 IU fell less often than those taking a placebo. Doses below 700 IU made no difference.
When the IOM panel came to analyse Bischoff-Ferrari’s data, it decided to include different studies. It removed a study6 showing a benefit from doses higher than 800 IU because the study had focused on groups of about 20 people, which the panel considered too small. And it added a trial7 that Bischoff-Ferrari had excluded because it hadn’t been double-blinded. Once the IOM swapped trials in Bischoff-Ferrari’s meta-analysis, the evidence showed no benefit from supplementation. Needless to say, Bischoff-Ferrari and others disagree with the IOM’s decision.
But as I wrote in the previous posting, I don’t think you can find out what the optimal dose is by looking at diseases only. If you look at other studies, e.g. the paper: “The vitamin D requirement during human lactation: the facts and IOM’s ‘utter’ failure;
Bruce W. Hollis and Carol L. Wagner”, which can be read free of charge here:
You see that something must be wrong with the hypothesis that 50 nmol/l and the corresponding low daily dose of less than 2000 IU/day. Thing is that we already know that babies do need at least 400 IU/day. Babies drink about 1 liter of breast milk per day. But 1 liter of breast milk usually doesn’t contain 400 IU, typically it contains far less than that. As is done in the study I linked to above, you can look at the vitamin D content of breast milk as a function of vitamin D dose you give to lactating women. What you find is that you need to give the lactating women 6000 IU/day to make sure the breast milk contains adequate amounts of vitamin D for the baby.
This is thus an indirect method to set a lower limit to the RDA, that doesn’t depend on a relation between vitamin D and illness (at least not for the adult, we use the baby for that). And this yields a lower limit of approximately 6,000 IU/day. The assumption here is that Nature has got the vitamin D dosage for babies correct.
In contrast, the current dogma seems to be that we know better than Nature. So, Nature got it wrong, we need to take low dosage, the dose you get from the Sun is higher than optimal. Then that leads to breast milk containing too low amounts of vitamin D, so we then need to give babies vitamin D supplements. Nature thus must have made another mistake.
Given the history of vitamin D research (as the article points out, the old upper safe limit of 2000 IU/day was totally wrong), I have zero confidence that we know better than Nature on this issue.