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Vitamin D toxicity: Excess of supplements is harmful for health, check alarming side-effects

Vitamin D toxicity is a condition when a person takes excessive amounts of Vitamin D. This happens not because of a diet or sun exposure but by an excessive amount of Vitamin D supplements. It can lead to toxicity in the body.

Written By: Disha Sharma New Delhi Updated on: October 06, 2022 14:07 IST
Vitamin D toxicity, Vitamin D, Vitamin D supplements, vitamin D diet
Image Source : FREEPIK Vitamin D supplements should be taken in adequate quantity in order to maintain good health

Vitamin D toxicity is drastically affecting the lifestyle. Already, several diseases have caused an inescapable cobweb around us. This toxicity is increasingly reminding us to take supplements in adequate quantity in order to stay healthy. Vitamin D toxicity occurs in the body when there is an excessive amount of Vitamin D. This happens not because of any diet or too much exposure to the sun but the consumption of the excessive amounts of Vitamin D supplements in the body.

Vitamin D toxicity occurring in the body is a buildup of calcium in the blood (hypercalcemia). If a trend is to be observed, nowadays people take Vitamin D supplements without thinking and they end up taking too much. 

How many doses are too much?

According to the researchers, data collected from a national survey, between 1999 and 2014, found a 2.8%  increase in the number of Vitamin D consumers. This is a potentially unsafe amount. This is more than 4,000 international units (IU) per day. Published in the June 20 issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), this research brought out some significant estimations that were important to know about the recent trends regarding Vitamin D intake.  

More than 600 to 800 IU per day, is mostly recommended. If a person takes too much Vitamin D supplement, then it becomes necessary to take an adequate quantity for a body. Research has suggested that if the doctor has not recommended an adequate quantity of supplements then avoid taking more than 4,000 IU per day. This is considered the safe upper limit.

An adequate quantity of supplements is required to avoid side effects. 

Excessive Vitamin D side effects:

1. Weakness 

2. Frequent urination 
3. Nausea 
4. Vomiting
5. Pain in the bone 
6. Kidney problems, that happen only after the formation of calcium stones  
7. Cancer 
8. Mood disorders 
9. Dementia 
10. Heart disease 
11. Diabetes

There are specific foods that can minimise the side effects if taken properly in international units.  

Selected food sources of vitamin D

Food                                                                                  International Units

Salmon, pink, cooked, 3 ounces                                              444

Tuna fish, canned in oil, drained, 3 ounces                             229

Sardines, canned in oil, drained, 3 ounces                             165

Milk, nonfat, fortified, 8 ounces                                               116

Orange juice, fortified, 8 ounces                                             100

Egg, whole, cooked, scrambled, 1 large                                   44

Cheddar cheese, 1 ounce                                                          7

Frozen yoghurt, flavour other than chocolate, 8 ounces                5

Source: USDA National Nutrient Database for Standard Reference

So, if a person is taking a dose higher than the RDA. It is sometimes better to take medical advice if you face a deficiency in the body. Proper care for a specified time frame is necessary to understand your body mechanism. 


Also Read Vitamin D Deficiency: These 5 alarming signs can put you at risk; know symptoms and treatment

Also Read Vitamin D, Omega-3 and exercise can reduce cancer risk by 61 per cent, to reveals study

Disclaimer: Tips and suggestions mentioned in the article are for general information purposes only and should not be taken as professional medical advice. Please consult a doctor before starting any fitness regime or medical advice.


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