Vitamin D Levels and Menstrual Health
In a 2015 study published in the Journal of Pediatric and Adolescent Gynecology, researchers evaluated 158 young women with severe vitamin D deficiency and PMS-related cognitive and emotional concerns. They were broken up into two groups. One group received vitamin D3 supplementation, and the other group received a placebo.
Each volunteer received one dose of 200,000 IU of vitamin D3 as an initial dose. Then, they were given a follow-up dose of 25,000 IU every 2 weeks for four months. Vitamin D3 levels were checked before and after the study, and they each completed a questionnaire regarding their experiences of their menstrual cycles during the four months. (1)
Vitamin D levels were dramatically improved after the first month. By the end of the four-month period, the volunteers reported significant improvement in: (1)
- Crying easily
- Disruption of personal relationships
The researchers concluded that vitamin D therapy can be proposed as a safe, effective, and convenient method for improving the quality of life in young women with severe vitamin D deficiencies and PMS-related mood and cognitive concerns. (1)
Vitamin D deficiency affects more than half the population of the United States. Deficient rates are as high as 82 percent among certain demographics. There is a higher prevalence of vitamin D3 deficiencies in non-white races, obese individuals, and those not consuming milk daily. (2)
Vitamin D3 is manufactured on the skin as a result of UVB ultraviolet radiation, which is mostly absent north of Atlanta during the winter months, as the sun is too low in the sky. During the summer months, even early morning or late afternoon rays cannot deliver enough UVB vitamin D-producing rays as, again, the sun is too low in the sky and the UVB rays are unable to penetrate the atmosphere. (4)
This makes it difficult for many to get the needed sunlight, even in the summer months to support optimal mental, emotional and physical health. On average, according to the Vitamin D Council, we need 4-5000 IU of vitamin D3 per day in the winter and 2-3000 IU of D3 per day in the summer to avoid deficiency concerns. (3) To be sure you are taking the correct amount, have your vitamin D3 levels checked regularly.
The goal for optimal vitamin D3 levels is: 45-80ng/mL.