Stress of Holidays!

December 27th, 2010 by DoctorZaidi

The holiday season is supposed to bring you happiness. But does it?

Be honest and ask yourself: Does all the shopping, traveling and partying around the time of the Holidays brings you happiness or simply momentary thrill and excitement? And at what cost? How much stress does it create? Only you can answer these questions.

Daily Dose of Vitamin D

December 13th, 2010 by DoctorZaidi


 I disagree with the Institute of Medicine ( IOM )  recommendations regarding Vitamin D. In my extensive clinical experience, I have never seen anyone having a normal level of vitamin D while taking only 600 I.U. of vitamin D daily, the new recommended  daily allowance by the IOM.  In addition, the IOM report tended to cast a lot of doubts about  the multiple health benefits of Vitamin D. Here are some of the facts about vitamin D that  most experts in vitamin D (including myself) agree upon, based upon a wealth of irrefutable clinical studies. 

  • Vitamin D deficiency doubles your risk for heart disease (1,2).


  • Vitamin D deficiency is clearly linked to fibromyalgia (3), chronic fatigue, chronic aches and pains due to osteomalacia, asthma (4), multiple sclerosis (5),  rheumatoid arthritis (6), systemic lupus erythematosus (7), Type 1 diabetes (8), inflammatory bowel disease ( 9 ) and osteoporosis.


  • Vitamin D deficiency increases your risk for colon cancer, breast cancer and ovarian cancer (10). The data on pancreatic cancer risk is inconsistent.


  • Vitamin D deficiency increases your risk for chronic kidney disease and hypertension  by stimulating the Renin-Angiotensin-System in the body.


  • Vitamin D supplementation is shown to remarkably reduce the risk of Type 1 diabetes (11, 12), multiple sclerosis (5) and several other autoimmune diseases.


  • Vitamin D supplementation significantly improves fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue, bone density, bone pains, multiple sclerosis and asthma. It also has been shown to improve hypertension and chronic kidney disease by inhibiting the renin-angiotensin system and by preventing secondary as well as tertiary hyperparathyroidism.


  • Vitamin D deficiency is linked to upper respiratory tract infections, according to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (13). Several reports , including our experience at the Jamila Diabetes and Endocrine Medical Center demonstrates that vitamin D supplementation in high doses can prevent as well effectively shorten the course of common colds and flu.


  • Vitamin D toxicity is extremely rare. You have to ingest vitamin D in extremely high doses of 100,000 I.U. per day for several weeks to develop vitamin D toxicity.


In conclusion, vitamin D is not a vitamin, but a hormone. It affects the functioning of almost every organ system in the body. Its deficiency is linked to a number of chronic medical diseases. Vitamin D supplementation in adequate amounts can prevent as well as treat a number of medical illnesses. And it is extremely safe.



  1. Wang TJ, Pencina MJ, Booth SL, et al. Vitamin D deficiency and risk of cardiovascular disease. Circulation.2008;117:503-511.
  2. Giovannucci E, Liu Y, Hollis BW, Rimm EB. 25-hydroxyvitamin D and risk of myocardial infarction in men. A prospective study. Arch Intern Med. 2008;168:1174-1180.
  3. Plotnikoff GA, Quigley JM. Prevalence of severe hypovitaminosis D in patients with persistent, nonspecific musculoskeletal pain. Mayo Clin Proc. 2003;(78):1463-1470.
  4. Litonjua AA, Weiss ST. Is vitamin D deficiency to blame for the asthma epidemic. J Allergy Clin Immunol. 2007;120(5):1031-1035.
  5. Hayes CE. Vitamin D. a natural inhibitor of multiple sclerosis. Proc Nutr Soc. 2000;59(4):531-535.
  6. Merlino LA, Curtis J, Mikuls TR et al. Vitamin D intake is inversely associated with rheumatoid arthritis: results from the Iowa Women’s Health Study. Arthritis Rheum 2004;50:72-77.
  7. Huisman AM, White KP, Algra A, et al. Vitamin D levels in women with systemic lupus erythematosus and fibromyalgia. J Rheumatol 2001;28:2535-2539.
  8. Svoren BM, Volkening LK, Wood JR, Laffel LM. Significant vitamin D deficiency in youth with Type 1 diabetes mellitus. J Pediatr.2009;154(1):132-134.
  9. Cantorna MT, Munsick C et al. 1,25-Dihydroxycholecalciferol prevents and ameliorates symptoms of experimental murine inflammatory bowel disease. J Nutr 2000;130:2648-2652.
  10. Garland CF, Garland FC, Gorham ED et al. The role of vitamin D in cancer prevention. Am J Pub Health.2006;96(2):252-26.
  11.  Hypponen E, Laara E, Reunanen A, et al. Intake of vitamin D and risk of Type 1 diabetes: a birth-cohort study. Lancet 2001;358:1500-1503.
  12. The EURODIAB Substudy 2 Study Group. Vitamin D supplementation in early childhood and risk for Type 1 (insulin- dependent) diabetes mellitus. Diabetologia 1999;42:51-54.
  13.  Ginde A, Mansbach J, et al. Association between serum 25-hydroxy vitamin D level and upper respiratory tract infection in the third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. Arch Int Med 2009;169(4):384-390.


Written by Sarfraz Zaidi, MD.

All Rights Reserved.

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Recommendations on Vitamin D

December 1st, 2010 by DoctorZaidi

On 11-30-10, the Institute of Medicine , a  U.S. goverment agency, released its recommendation on the daily intake of vitamin D as 600 I.U. (15 mcg) for everyone over the age of one. As an endocrinologist, I  have been checking vitamin D level in all of my patients over the last 10 years. I have not seen any one having a normal blood level of vitamin D on a daily dose of 600 I.U. per day. In my extenisive experience, most people need a daily dose of 2,000 I.U. ( 50 mcg) to 10,000 I.U. (250 mcg) to have a good level of vitamin D.

As I mention in my book, “Power of Vitamin D,” there is a scientific way to determine how much vitamin D  you need, instead of following a blind recommendation. Get your vitamin D level checked with a test called 25 OH vitamin D.  The normal range for 25 OH vitamin D level is 30-100 ng/ml or 75-250 nmol/L

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