Rebecca Reagan was so exhausted, she could barely get out of bed every morning. Her fatigue had become so severe, she says, “I quit functioning as a normal adult.”1
Her doctors were stumped trying to find the cause of her tiredness. They had examined her for years, but couldn’t explain her condition. They suggested she had a disease like lupus or multiple sclerosis – even though her medical tests seemed to rule out those conditions.
But in the end, her overwhelming fatigue merely came down to the lack of a single vitamin. A common blood test revealed the problem – a blood test that one doctor finally ordered.
She didn’t have lupus or any other autoimmune disease. She merely needed more vitamin D!
And taking vitamin D gave Rebecca her life back. Here’s why it had this remarkable result. . .
Today, there are plenty of Rebeccas suffering unexplained tiredness who can’t get a good answer for their problems.
Researchers at the Cooper Medical School of Rowan University, Camden, New Jersey, say that one of every three people who goes to a doctor complains of fatigue. The New Jersey scientists also note that in only five percent of these cases can a doctor explain the cause.
But when the researchers tested vitamin D on people who didn’t have a major illness but just felt exhausted all the time, they found that this single vitamin could re-energize more than four out of five of the folks in their study.2
In their conclusions about vitamin D, the scientists made these key points:
- If you feel overly tired all day, get your vitamin D tested. A surprisingly large number of people who complain of too much fatigue are low in vitamin D.
- For quite a few people, simply taking vitamin D supplements can revive their personal energy.
- Even if you’re taking a vitamin D supplement, you may still be deficient in vitamin D, because supplements often don’t contain enough to provide significant help. These researchers believe the best course is taking 50,000 international units three times a week for five weeks. Then if your D levels test normal, you can move on to a lower, maintenance dose.3 This is an extremely high dose – higher than I’ve ever seen recommended. I’m just passing along with these researchers say. Typical recommendations range from 5,000 to 20,000 IU per day. The best move is to have a doctor monitor your blood levels and adjust your dose accordingly.
Researchers in England have identified a key reason why vitamin D can relieve fatigue – this nutrient is needed by the mitochondria (energy producing structures) in your muscles to keep producing sufficient energy to fuel their functions effectively.4
According to researcher Akash Sinha, “A simple vitamin D tablet could help boost your energy levels – from within the cells.”
Exercise Boosts Vitamin D Benefits, and Vice Versa
When you take vitamin D, research at John Hopkins shows that moving your muscles every day with exercise not only becomes easier, but the exercise can boost one of vitamin D’s most important health benefits – protecting your heart health.
To reach this conclusion, the Hopkins scientists analyzed the health records of more than 10,000 people collected over a period of about 20 years. They found that folks who exercised and kept their vitamin D levels up enjoyed a multiplied, synergistic extra benefit in protection against strokes and heart attacks. The combination of these two lifestyle habits is more powerful than either one by itself.
The data analysis showed that when the people in the research combined a consistent exercise program with enough vitamin D, they reduced their risk of heart attack and stroke by more than 20 percent during the 20 years of the study. Neither exercise nor vitamin D by themselves came close to providing that benefit.5
Sorting Things Out
Conventional doctors are still trying to get their heads around the importance of vitamin D. Part of the trouble is that mainstream doctors have been taught to give a particular drug to solve a particular problem. And they bring that same narrow perspective to nutrition and other aspects of health.
But the human body is more complicated than that. Health has to be treated holistically. Yes, in some cases, merely taking vitamin D supplements may clear up a problem like Rebecca Reagan’s fatigue. For other people, taking vitamin D may have to be combined with taking a daily, brisk walk to bring out the nutrient’s important health benefits.
My advice – keep learning about every facet of your lifestyle that can make you healthier. Then you can discover the holistic combination that brings you the best of health.