Do you supplement vitamin A or cod liver oil to balance D3?
I know we should get vitamin A from liver and other foods, and supplementing can be toxic if you aren't careful and don't know what you are doing. That's the common knowledge I guess.
Like others have posted here I'm having some trouble getting the whole A-D3-K2 thing all figured out for myself. I've been reading how vitamin A blunts the toxicity* of D3, by causing fewer activated proteins to be created (Masterrjohn), and that the optimal ratio of A to D3 is about 2.5 to 1 (Perfect Health Diet) and even higher in other studies. I have read on Mercola that K2 should be supplemented at at least 100ug per 1,000 IU D3 (Dr. Kate interview). I can't look up what Mark says about A or K2 since I loaned my copy of Primal Blueprint to my sister; please remind me if that info is available somewhere like here at Mark's site.
Anyway, it's all very confusing because there aren't definitive answers yet. But it seems to me that it would be safe and prudent to optimize vitamin D3 at at least 40ng/ml (Perfect Health Diet, supported by Masterjohn hints) or maybe 50-60 per Vitamin D Council (Cannell), and that the vitamin A should be about 2 to 1 or at least one to one for D3, and I should get at least 100ug K2 per 1000 IU of D3 to avoid rampant D3 running out of K2 and driving calcium into my blood vessels....
Because I am very large, 365 lbs and shrinking, LBM about 195, and it's pretty much the dead of winter in northern California, I need to supplement D3 at 12,000 IU to reach 40 ng/ml. So a 2:1 ratio of A would require 24,000 IU of vitamin A, and K2 would need to be 1200 ug per day (at 100ug/IU of D3). The K2 I think is solvable by throwing money at it. I would have to eat a truckload of "slima beans" aka natto, or get most from supplements which is what I think I have to do. I just bought some Thorne Research liquid K2 (MK-4) online and am taking some LEF K2 (combined types of K2 and K1) in the mean time. So K2 I can deal with since there's no toxicity to worry about, but A is a problem because there is a lot of fear out there that makes me worry about it.
To get enough vitamin A from liver I would need about 10 ounces per day! Seeing how I gag and nearly throw up when trying to eat liver, that would be very difficult to do. It would also become my primary protein source.
Mercola has come out against cod liver oil but I think he misinterprets the studies he cites. Masterjohn is OK with it and there's a long history of people having good (and bad) results.
Instead of cod liver oil though I'm considering taking vitamin A from fish liver oil like from Now Foods (25,000 IU per capsule - very high). I'll eat enough liver to get the other benefits, maybe 1/4 lb per week.
I am losing weight which means I can only eat so many carb calories from "safe starches" (I do eat sweet potato, potatoes, and white rice in small amounts with fat and fiber foods) so getting A from sweet potatoes is not going to work.
I assume others here are facing a similar conundrum. What do you do?
*By toxicity I mean when absent of A and K, D3 will drive calcium into soft tissues. K2 directs it to the right place, but D3 uses up K2, and A will blunt some of the over creation of the proteins that move calcium around when there's a lot of D3. Or so I understand...or not...I am not a scientist and just trying to do what's right for me.
Whatever supplement or food you are using; always a good idea to cycling it, not taking the same day after day and for for months, take a break now and then...
Switched from taking D in the winter to taking the fermented cod liver oil/high vitamin butter oil blend this year based on what I've looked into.
I do believe we can reach 40ng/ml with the FCLO/HVBO method. I'm leery of attempting the higher ranges that the vitamin D council recommends.
Last edited by Neckhammer; 01-30-2013 at 06:35 PM.
What are FCLO/HVBO? Thanks.
Originally Posted by Neckhammer
FCLO: Fermented Cod Liver Oil
HVBO: High vitamin butter oil
FCLO has natural d and a from fermenting the fish livers.
I take this Butter/Cod Liver Blend - Green Pasture
Originally Posted by Viking
It stands for "fermented cod liver oil/high vitamin butter oil".
The HVBO takes care of the K2 while the FCLO has your A and D. They are also what I consider "whole food supplements" which is to say any co factors that work in conjunction with these things are left intact and ingested. I do believe the hype that there are literally hundreds if not thousands of unstudied substances in real whole foods.
Last edited by Neckhammer; 01-30-2013 at 06:54 PM.
I followed your link and they say they can't state how much vitamin A and D, etc are in this. How do you know what you are taking? It sounds healthful but I need to KNOW.
Originally Posted by Neckhammer