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How do I Choose the Best Vitamin D Softgels?

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  • Written By: S. Gonzales
  • Edited By: A. Joseph
  • Last Modified Date: 16 November 2016
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Vitamin D is an essential hormone in the body. Adequate levels of it can help prevent or remedy many health problems, including cancer, depression, fatigue, diabetes, osteoporosis and many more. After taking a test that suggests that you are deficient, you might want to search for appropriate vitamin D softgels to take for supplementation purposes. To choose the best vitamin D softgels, you'll have to pay attention to the form of the vitamin you're purchasing, how strong the softgels are and what other vitamins and minerals the softgels include in their formulations.

It is recommended that individuals have vitamin D levels of 50–80 nanograms per mililiter (ng/mL) or 125–200 nanomoles per liter (nmol/L). To check where your levels are, get a 25-hydroxyvitamin D test, which can also be referred to as a 25(OH)D test. If you find that you're deficient, you can look to vitamin D softgels as a way to increase your levels.

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You might wonder what type of vitamin D softgels you should use as supplements. If you're supplementing, the best type of vitamin D softgels to choose are those that are made with D3, or cholecalciferol. Excessive consumption of D3 might lead to toxicity issues, but the instances of this are rare. High ingestion D2, or ergocalciferol, which is available only by prescription, has a much higher probability of toxicity. Some research suggests that D3 is the superior form of vitamin D to supplement with, because its properties closely mirror the type of vitamin D that is produced in the body after healthy exposure to sunlight.

Taking the appropriate strength of D3 softgels can be an important part of raising your vitamin D levels. Some doctors recommend that patients take 1,000 international units (IU) of D3 per 25-35 pounds (11.4 kg-15.9 kg) of body weight. Some patients might need to take as much as 10,000 IU of D3 per day to see an increase in their vitamin D levels. Vitamin D softgels are available in various strength concentrations for your particular needs. Weight is not the only factor that can influence how much vitamin D you need to take; age, skin color, location, the season of the year and sun exposure habits can also help determine how much you need to take.

Choosing a vitamn D softgel with other vitamins and minerals in it can be to your benefit. Vitamin D has a reputation of working better when there is a presence of certain other vitamins or minerals, such as magnesium, vitamin K, zinc, boron or vitamin A. Of these vitamins and minerals, magnesium and vitamin K can be the most important. So, you might want to choose vitamin D softgels with magnesium and vitamin K in them to reap the most from your supplementation.

Sunlight is one of the natural sources of vitamin D. You might become deficient in vitamin D as winter approaches or you live in an area where sun exposure is limited. As such, your vitamin D needs can increase. Supplementing with vitamin D can be an easy way to keep your vitamin D levels up and ensure that you are getting enough of the vitamin throughout the year.

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