“Not too much, not too little, but just right” – that’s the key to perfect Vitamin D balance.
The ‘Sunshine Vitamin,’ vitamin D, indeed holds an indisputable position in the health matrix, enhancing bone health and bolstering immunity and overall well-being. But what if you ever get too much sunshine?
Just like too much sun can lead to painful sunburn, overconsumption of Vitamin D, either from excessive sun exposure or over-supplementation, can tip the scales from beneficial to potentially harmful.
Join us to unravel the enigma of Vitamin D metabolism, spot the red flags of an overdose, and learn how to flush vitamin D out of system naturally.
The Metabolic Pathway of Vitamin D in Your System
The journey of Vitamin D within our body is nothing short of fascinating. Your body can naturally produce Vitamin D when exposed to sunlight, specifically ultraviolet B (UVB) radiation. However, certain foods, such as fatty fish, fortified dairy products, and supplements, also contribute to Vitamin D intake.
Vitamin D undergoes a transformative journey after being consumed or absorbed through the skin.
At first, Vitamin D is inactive and needs to go through two conversions before it becomes its active form, calcitriol.
The first conversion occurs in the liver, transforming Vitamin D into calcidiol (25-hydroxyvitamin D).
The second conversion occurs in the kidneys, which are transformed into calcitriol.
When Vitamin D is at optimum levels, your kidney slows down the process of converting Vitamin D to its active form. But, when levels are low, the kidneys increase this conversion process.
But do you know excess amounts of vitamin D can be toxic?
Although overdosing on Vitamin D from sunlight or food is uncommon, taking high-dose supplements increases the risk.
Vitamin D increases calcium absorption in the gastrointestinal tract. Over time, excess Vitamin D can lead to hypercalcemia, with elevated calcium levels (serum calcium concentrations between 11.1 and 23.1 mg/dL) in the blood.
According to a report, if Vitamin D levels remain high over several months to years, excess calcium can deposit in the heart, blood vessels, and kidneys, causing potential damage.
Hence comes the necessity to learn how to flush the excess vitamin D out of your system.
How To Flush Vitamin D Out Of System Naturally?
There’s no specific protocol for flushing vitamin D, but following general recommendations can help regulate levels naturally.
Leverage Diet for Vitamin D Balance
When it comes to naturally flushing excess Vitamin D out of the system, diet plays a key role. Include specific foods and beverages in your daily routine to help your body maintain a healthy balance of a crucial vitamin.
According to a study, magnesium aids the enzymes in metabolizing Vitamin D in the body. So, you can add foods high in magnesium – like leafy greens, nuts, seeds, and whole grains to regulate the amount of Vitamin D in your system.
Can you take Ashwagandha and vitamin D together?
Besides, limits alcohol and foods higher in added sugars, saturated fat, and sodium.
Discontinue Vitamin D Supplements
If you are taking high-dose vitamin D supplements and your doctor has confirmed that your levels are too high, the first step is typically to stop taking the supplements. Also, avoid eating foods rich in vitamin D.
Lower Calcium Intake
Avoid calcium-rich foods, including dark green vegetables, most seeds, dairy items, and some types of fish.
Hydration: Your Secret Weapon
Don’t underestimate the power of water. Staying well-hydrated is another natural way to aid in eliminating excess nutrients, including Vitamin D, from the body.
Vitamin D is a fat-soluble vitamin stored in the body’s fat cells. Drinking water helps to dilute the concentration of vitamin D in the body and helps to flush it out through urine.
Besides, adequate hydration can support kidney function, which is crucial in Vitamin D metabolism and excretion.
Avoid Excessive Sun Exposure
Your body produces vitamin D when your skin is exposed to sunlight. If your vitamin D levels are too high, limit your sun exposure. However, getting too much vitamin D from sunlight alone is very challenging.
Maintain Fitness: An Ally in Balance
While exercise doesn’t directly decrease the level of Vitamin D in your body, it aids in enhancing your overall health and metabolism. It includes the processes related to vitamin regulation.
Your doctor may prescribe medications or a diuretic to lower calcium levels during vitamin D toxicity. A study suggests that isotonic fluids with or without a loop diuretic, such as furosemide and glucocorticoids, are usually effective in reducing serum calcium concentrations. It can help resolve the symptoms of hypervitaminosis.
How much Vitamin D is too much?
According to The National Institutes of Health, above 50–60 ng/mL, or above 125–150 nmol/L of vitamin D in your blood is considered toxic.
The recommended guidelines for the Tolerable Upper Intake Level of vitamin D are-
|Age or Condition
|Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL)
|Infants 0-6 months
|1000 International Units (IU) or 25 micrograms (mcg)
|Infants 7-12 months
|1500 IU or 38 mcg
|Children 1-3 years
|2500 IU or 63 mcg
|Children 4-8 years
|3000 IU or 75 mcg
|People 9 years and older, including pregnant and breastfeeding women
|4000 IU or 100 mcg.
What Is The Recommended Dose Of Vitamin D?
The Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) of Vitamin D varies by age and physiological state.
|Age or Condition
|Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA)
|Infants 0-12 months
|400 International Units (IU) or 10 micrograms (mcg)
|Children 1-18 years
|600 IU or 15 mcg
|Adults 19-70 years
|600 IU or 15 mcg
|Adults 71 years and older
|800 IU or 20 mcg
|Pregnant or breastfeeding women
|600 IU or 15 mcg
How Much Sunlight Should I Get Daily To Improve My Vitamin D Levels?
You need about 10 to 15 minutes outside to get enough vitamin D from sunlight. When exposed to sunlight, your skin makes vitamin D from cholesterol. The sun’s ultraviolet B (UVB) rays hit cholesterol in the skin cells, providing the energy for vitamin D synthesis.
However, the time you need in the sun depends on factors such as your skin color, where you live, and the time of day.
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What Are The Symptoms Of Vitamin D Overdose?
An overdose of vitamin D can lead to hypervitaminosis D, which can cause a range of symptoms due to excessive calcium levels in the body.
- Nausea And Vomiting
- Fatigue And Weakness
- Increased Urination
- Increased Thirst
- Bone Pain And Muscle Aches
- A Lack Of Appetite
- Difficulty Concentrating
- Irregular Heartbeat
- Weight Loss.
How Long Does Vitamin D Take To Get Out Of Your System?
The duration for vitamin D to leave your system largely depends on its half-life in the body. According to a study, vitamin D has a half-life of about 15 days in the body. If you stop taking vitamin D supplements, the level of vitamin D in your body will decrease by half roughly every two weeks.
Vitamin D can be cleared from your body in 2-3 months after discontinuing intake. The elimination time is usually 5-6 times the half-life. Factors like metabolism, health, and vitamin D levels can affect the duration.
In case of excess vitamin D, it can take time to eliminate and return blood calcium levels to normal.
If you still need to know how to flush vitamin D out of system naturally, you can try these proven strategies to avoid overdosing. Striking the right balance is key when it comes to vitamin D intake.
Remember, when it comes to your health, a personalized approach is the best strategy. Listen to your body, be proactive, and remain informed about your health needs. Your well-being is a lifelong journey; walk it wisely.
For more on safe supplementation, visit our blogs.
I am a health and wellness enthusiast working in a Pittsburgh-based wellness clinic. My primary role as a consultant is to tailor a balanced lifestyle for my patients, where positive steps and potent supplements play a synergistic role.