Don't take a Vitamin D supplement if you don't need one
A 2019 Canadian study published in JAMA compared the effects of different doses of Vitamin D. The Vitamin D was given daily for 3 years to adults with osteoporosis. The study found that compared to a 400 IU daily dose, a 4000 IU daily dose and a 10,000 IU daily dose reduced bone mineral density in the lower leg. The 10,000 IU daily dose also reduced bone mineral density in the forearm. Bone strength was not significantly affected by the different doses.
Data analyzed from 30,000 US adults from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), published in the Annals of Internal Medicine in 2019, identified a 35% increase in cancer-related death risk and a 111% increase in all-cause death in people with adequate Vitamin D levels (greater than 20 ng/ml) that were supplementing with more than 400 IU of Vitamin D per day.
More and more research is coming out on a variety of nutrients indicating that if you aren’t deficient in a certain nutrient, taking supplements may have negative consequences. Getting your nutrients from supplements is not the same as getting them from food. Your body was designed to get nutrients from food not supplements.
Supplements play an important role in deficiency and in certain conditions are warranted but the indiscriminate use of supplements and sale of supplements by well meaning (or not so well meaning), but misinformed people, is a problem.
Don’t take a Vitamin D supplement if your Vitamin D is normal. If it was low and it was necessary to take a supplement then once your Vitamin D is normal again work with your health care professional on a maintenance dose so that the level does not continue to rise.
See some of my previous blogs for more info on Vitamin D.
While there are not a lot of foods that are high in Vitamin D, Portobello Mushrooms are one good source of Vitamin D. Here is my recipe for Portobello Mushrooms stuffed with quinoa.
Quinoa Stuffed Portobello Mushrooms
Makes 2 servings
Preheat oven to 375° F
¼ cup quinoa
¼ cup white wine (optional) – can substitute water if desired
½ cup water
2 cloves garlic, minced
2 green onions, chopped
2 tsp. olive oil - divided in half (may use more olive oil if not limiting calories)
2 cups spinach
1 cup arugula
1/8 tsp. sea salt
2 Tbsp. pumpkin seeds
2 Tbsp. dried cranberries
2 large Portobello mushrooms, cleaned with stems removed (pick mushrooms with room for stuffing)
2 Tbsp. Feta cheese
Rinse quinoa well. In small saucepan bring water and white wine to a boil. Add quinoa and reduce heat to simmer. Cover pan and cook until done, about 15 minutes. Stir half way through cooking time.
Heat 1 tsp. olive oil in large skillet over medium heat. Saute garlic and green onions about 1 minute. Mix spinach and arugula in to garlic onion mixture, stirring until spinach and arugula leaves are just wilted, about 1 to 2 minutes. Mix in salt, pumpkin seeds and dried cranberries. Transfer to bowl. Add quinoa to spinach arugula mixture and set aside.
In skillet, heat 1 tsp. olive oil over medium heat. Cook Portobello mushrooms cap side down for 2 minutes. Turn over and cook another 2 minutes. Turn to cap side again and cook 2 minutes. Turn over and cook another 2 minutes. If mushroom is not done continue to cook until tender. Remove mushrooms from pan and drain on paper towel.
Fill each Portobello mushroom with the quinoa spinach mixture and top with 1 Tbsp. feta cheese each. Serve any leftover filling on the side. Warm mushrooms in 350°F. oven for 5 minutes or until cheese melts.
Nutritional analysis per mushroom/serving: 247 calories, 10 g. protein, 5 g. fiber, 12 g. fat, 125 mg. calcium and 290 mg sodium.