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Author Topic: Calcium/Vitamin D  (Read 5281 times)

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Offline SANJUANDUDE

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Calcium/Vitamin D
« on: January 15, 2012, 03:22:21 PM »
Have any of you heard that the supplement Calcium/Vitamin D may aid in increasing a person's CD-4 count??  I am on a Yahoo Group called, Poz Health, and the topic came up.  Also, there has been some reports that Selenium can help to increase t-cells.

The primary element with any vitamins and supplents is that there is never any proof.

http://timehasshownme.com
10/2011-CD-4-598-Undetectable
01/2012-CD-4-758-Undetectable
04/2012-CD$-780-70 Viral Load
08-2012-CD4-846--20 viral load
02/2013-CD$ 865----20 Undetectable Viral Load
08/2013- CD4-898----<20 undetectable viral load

Offline newt

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #1 on: January 15, 2012, 03:51:28 PM »
There is no study showing vitamin D supplementation, or indeed having normal vitamin D levels, raises CD4 count, compared to having vitamin D deficiency.

Vitamin D. oh mysterious vitamin, important but mysterious. Overt he counter supplements are not that effective at getting the vitamin into your body (tho food is) and having more than necessary in your body/using supplements is not associated with health benefit in respect of HIV. << but the serious studies are non-existent as you note

Vitamin D may help with some autoimmune diseases. The paradoxical effects of vitamin D on immune responses to (acute) infection while suppressing (long term) autoimmune disease requires additional investigation, a serious researcher has said. << whether or which of these this applies to HIV is unclear.

In general if you don't have enough vitamin D (as many people with HIV don't) this is not so good (as with HIV- peope) but too much, it gets pissed out (or equivalent).

Calcium may be more important to immune regulation, and being deficient is deffo bad for your heart, bones, immunity etc, but you don't need much and too much may well be bad for your heart as well. There is nothing serious to say it affects CD4 cells positively though (indeed, the best, if scant research, says it has no major effect either way).

Selenium, the research is more in favour of a modest effect on CD4 and viral load. Although on viral load, at a reading of over 100,000 the typical -10,000 reduction is neither here nor there. A 200μg dose of selenium daily may produce a modest +30 CD4 count on average (but not in all people, some lose cells). And with combination therapy this is probably beside the point after a year of meds.

- matt
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline madbrain

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #2 on: January 17, 2012, 01:59:37 AM »
Overt he counter supplements are not that effective at getting the vitamin into your body (tho food is) and having more than necessary in your body/using supplements is not associated with health benefit in respect of HIV. << but the serious studies are non-existent as you note

Not sure what you are smoking here.

Food generally contain minuscule amounts of vitamin D and are not a significant source of vitamin D for the body.

The sun is the most effective source, but in the winter you can usually not get enough vitamin D from the it.

Supplements are quite effective at raising vitamin D levels and are commonly prescribed for that purpose. But you do have to find the proper individual dosage, which can take multiple vitamin D level tests and trial and error. The 400 IU dose that is typically recommended is indeed completely ineffective at raising your levels. Many doctors recommend 2000 IU/day now.

Personally, I arrived at a dose of 10,000 IU of vitamin D3 per day to maintain my levels. This is because I take 3 prescriptions that deplete vitamin D, and I don't go out much in the sun. Most people don't need as much per day.

Quote
In general if you don't have enough vitamin D (as many people with HIV don't) this is not so good (as with HIV- peope) but too much, it gets pissed out (or equivalent).

Vitamin D is fat soluble and does not get pissed out. In fact you can take a very large dose of vitamin D all at once to raise your level, in the hundreds of thousands of IU. It is often prescribed that way when levels are very low.

Offline newt

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #3 on: January 17, 2012, 02:12:50 AM »
I do not equate prescription vitamin D with supplements. Supplements for me means what you get in the health food shop. I agree prescription preparations can be effective sometimes.

Vitamin D is mostly excreted in the bile. It is also turned into to water-soluble chemiccals and excreted in the urine. So I believe saying it gets pissed out (or equivalent) is acccurate.

- matt
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline madbrain

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #4 on: January 17, 2012, 04:48:28 AM »
I do not equate prescription vitamin D with supplements. Supplements for me means what you get in the health food shop. I agree prescription preparations can be effective sometimes.

You can "prescribed" an over-the-counter D3 supplement by your doctor, just like they will sometimes tell you to take over-the-counter medications.
Or you can also get a vitamin D2 supplement as a prescription also.

Vitamin D2 has been shown to be less effective at raising vitamin D levels than vitamin D3.
There have been many studies on that. One I just googled is http://www.ajcn.org/content/68/4/854.short .

So in this case, the over the counter vitamin D3 supplements are actually superior - whether you buy them at a drugstore, your pharmacy or a health food store. But it helps to check if it's USP verified and/or if the manufacturer follows GMP.

Quote
So I believe saying it gets pissed out (or equivalent) is acccurate.

I don't think it's accurate. Fat-soluble vitamins like vitamin D can accumulate in the body for long periods of time.

http://www.livestrong.com/article/451616-do-all-excess-vitamins-get-excreted-from-the-body/

Offline SANJUANDUDE

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #5 on: January 18, 2012, 01:57:33 PM »
I don't believe that vitamins or supplements can ever truly hurt you.

http://timehasshownme.com
10/2011-CD-4-598-Undetectable
01/2012-CD-4-758-Undetectable
04/2012-CD$-780-70 Viral Load
08-2012-CD4-846--20 viral load
02/2013-CD$ 865----20 Undetectable Viral Load
08/2013- CD4-898----<20 undetectable viral load

Offline newt

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #6 on: January 18, 2012, 05:57:49 PM »
Except when eg too much vitamin D supplementation leads to hypercalcemia (too much calcium in the blood) and perhaps in extreme cases to heart irregularities, kidney stones etc.

The body needs so much of each vitamin, there is no robust evidence more does serious good except in the very short term. If you eat proper and get out and about in daylight and have normal gastric function you will have enough of all vitamins without supplements. << smokers etc excepted

- matt
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline Ann

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #7 on: January 19, 2012, 10:08:56 AM »
I don't believe that vitamins or supplements can ever truly hurt you.

Regardless of whether or not you believe vitamins cannot hurt you, they can.

Some supplements can as well. For example, we pozzies should not take enchinacea.
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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline BM

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #8 on: January 26, 2012, 10:58:00 AM »
... we pozzies should not take enchinacea.

Is that in general or just for those of us on meds?

Offline madbrain

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #9 on: January 27, 2012, 07:39:40 PM »
Except when eg too much vitamin D supplementation leads to hypercalcemia (too much calcium in the blood) and perhaps in extreme cases to heart irregularities, kidney stones etc.

It is very difficult to overdose on vitamin D. The doses involved are massive. Some reported cases involve supplements that have the wrong dosage labeled, ie. much more than what the label states, ie. 1000 times.
This risk can be avoided by taking USP verified supplements.

http://www.vitamindcouncil.org/about-vitamin-d/what-is-vitamin-d/vitamin-d-toxicity/#ref744
One person who OD'ed was taking 40000 IU per day, another 2000000 IU per day.

I have been taking 10,000 IU per day for over a yea, and I am still well within the normal range in my last vitamin D level test  in november.

Quote
The body needs so much of each vitamin, there is no robust evidence more does serious good except in the very short term. If you eat proper and get out and about in daylight and have normal gastric function you will have enough of all vitamins without supplements. << smokers etc excepted

This may be true of some other vitamins, but it is simply not true about vitamin D. You cannot get enough vitamin D from food, period. In the winter, in most locations you simply cannot get enough from the sun either.

Unfortunately in today's society, vitamin D deficiency is the rule rather than the exception, whether you are a smoker, HIV positive, "etc (?)" or not.
See http://www.naturalnews.com/028357_vitamin_D_deficiency.html
In that study, 59 percent were deficient, including 25 percent that were extremely deficient.
Statistically, there is much more risk from not taking a vitamin D supplement than taking one.
You should take a vitamin D level test to find out how deficient you are.

Offline madbrain

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #10 on: January 27, 2012, 07:41:11 PM »
Is that in general or just for those of us on meds?

There are interactions between it and certain meds.

Offline TheRoof

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #11 on: March 07, 2012, 05:57:37 PM »
There are a lot of things people say about vitamins. In my opinion. Naturally. Nothing replaces a nutrient rich diet. (at the end of the day)

I always enjoyed chemistry and took a few courses as an elective. (But by no means am I qualified to give advice. So take this an a complete opinion)
What I learned from the text book on vitamin supplementation.  You get better vitamin absorption through nutrient rich food versus vitamins in pill form. The process of why this is done is complicated to say in simple words.

But basically. The vitamin molecule is ingrained into the food you are eating. The vitamin is better metabolized by your body because supplementation of similar molecular weight density has a better absorption rate than a vitamin which stands on its own which is able to absorb more of the vitamin efficiently.


The hypothetical statement has been that only 5% of the vitamin pill (man-made) is truly absorbed by the body. (Unless you do it intravenously) Why do vitamins have a 1000% daily intake for each vitamin? You are not actually getting 1000% it is about 1-10% of that 1000% supplement


In other words. A nutrient-rich diet is the best way to get your nutrients, and a vitamin should be a complement to your food. Not a substitute. (All though taking certain vitamins in large quantities is dangerous. If done long enough. The key is moderation)

« Last Edit: March 07, 2012, 06:02:00 PM by TheRoof »

Offline aztecan

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #12 on: March 08, 2012, 10:44:08 AM »
In other words. A nutrient-rich diet is the best way to get your nutrients, and a vitamin should be a complement to your food. Not a substitute. (All though taking certain vitamins in large quantities is dangerous. If done long enough. The key is moderation)

The body needs so much of each vitamin, there is no robust evidence more does serious good except in the very short term. If you eat proper and get out and about in daylight and have normal gastric function you will have enough of all vitamins without supplements. << smokers etc excepted

- matt


I think you both hit the nail on the head. The reality is, most of us in the U.S. and Europe can avail ourselves of nutrient rich roods year-round.

Those of us in the Southwestern U.S,, where I live, have an abundance of sunlight to produce Vitamin D. But, some still find themselves low.

If you want to know about supplementing your diet and natural sun exposure with vitamins, have your doctor check your vitamin D levels. The doctor may tell you to add a bit, or may say you are good to go.

HUGS,

Mark
"May your life preach more loudly than your lips."
~ William Ellery Channing (Unitarian Minister)

Offline friskyguy

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #13 on: July 25, 2012, 05:47:51 AM »
All good advice.......one thing to remember is that some of our meds are believed to reduce VitD levels......I recall reading Efavirenz is believed to be one of those culprits.

And in another twist I found it truly amazing to read that many Hiv positive individuals living in tropical Thailand also test low for Vit D.....perhaps due to the meds!?
Sero converted Sept '10 / Confirmed + Dec '10
Jan '11, VL 9,500 / CD4 482 (32%)
Feb '11, VL 5,800 / CD4 680 (37%)
start Atripla
Mch '11, VL UD / CD4 700 (42%)
Jun  '11, VL UD / CD4 750 (43%)
swap to Kivexa and Efav. due to osteopenia diag. (DEXA) / kidney issues ( decline in eGFR to 77 )
start supplements - Vit D3 / Omega 3 / multivitamin / mini aspirin
Dec '11,  VL UD <20 /  CD4 670 (49%)  / CD4:CD8 = 1.4
all labs now within normal ranges
Mch '12,  VL UD / CD4 600 (51%)
Sep '12,  VL UD / CD4 810 (51%)
Mch '13   VL UD / CD4 965 (56%)
Sep '13   VL UD / CD4 (not taken)
Dec '13   VL UD / CD4 901 (35%) / CD4:CD8 = 1.1  /  eGFR > 100

Offline Common_ground

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #14 on: July 25, 2012, 06:43:21 AM »
The vitamin D deficiancy is more linked to food intake in Thailand rather than the sun. Milk and dairy products are a luxury for most Thais and they are not accustomed to use it in cooking.
Things are slowly changing with foreign influence but outside Bangkok most people eat traditional Thai food, a rice based diet low in protein.
2011 May - Neg.
2012 June CD4:205, 16% VL:2676 Start Truvada/Stocrin
2012 July  CD4:234, 18% VL:88
2012 Sep  CD4:238, 17% VL:UD
2013 Feb  CD4:257, 24% VL:UD -viramune/truvada
2013 May CD4:276, 26% VL:UD

Offline Ann

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #15 on: July 25, 2012, 08:54:55 AM »
The vitamin D deficiancy is more linked to food intake in Thailand rather than the sun. Milk and dairy products are a luxury for most Thais and they are not accustomed to use it in cooking.
Things are slowly changing with foreign influence but outside Bangkok most people eat traditional Thai food, a rice based diet low in protein.

I rather doubt that - vitamin D's primary source is sunlight - or rather the chemical process that happens in the body when exposed to sunlight. Vitamin D is difficult to obtain through dietary sources.

Milk is only a real source of vitamin D when the milk has been fortified with vitamin D. This is common practice in the US, but not other places. The UK, for example, does not fortify dairy products.

Fish oils are one of the best dietary supplements for vitamin D, and Thais eat a lot of fish.

According to some research, low vitamin D levels are more associated with race - with people who possess darker skin tones being more at risk than people with lighter skin tones - than they are with dietary factors.

Here's some reading for you:

Vitamin D and Health (Harvard School of Public Health)

Vitamin D and HIV (natap)

Vitamin D deficiency extremely common among HIV-positive patients in diverse regions (NAM/aidsmap)

From the last link:


Conclusions

These studies add to a growing body of evidence that insufficient or deficient vitamin D levels are extremely prevalent among people with HIV. While prevalence figures (and the cut-off values used to define them) vary, these studies reported insufficiency rates of 54% to 72%; figures which are generally consistent with other reports. Studies in women linked vitamin D deficiency with risk of bacterial vaginosis, thrush, and other health problems.

The single factor invariably associated with insufficiency or deficiency was non-Caucasian race. Otherwise, reported risk factors were not entirely consistent, although several studies identified NNRTI and/or efavirenz use.

Investigators agreed that vitamin D deficiency is prevalent among HIV-positive individuals, has harmful effects on health, and is easily addressable through supplementation. Remaining research questions include the link between deficiency and clinical health outcomes, the impact of supplementation, the best doses for supplementation, and closer comparisons of deficiency rates in people with HIV and in the general population, where deficiency is also common.

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"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline friskyguy

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Re: Calcium/Vitamin D
« Reply #16 on: July 25, 2012, 10:59:22 AM »
Knew I could count on you for providing some great research papers on this  :)

CG, I am caucasian, living right on the equator who gets lots of tropical sun and with an all year sexy tan  8)  Even with good nutrition I however need a VitD3 supplement to keep my levels at optimal levels.....go figure!!! In my case I reckon its the NNRTI meds (efavirenz) as has been mentioned in the reports supplied by Ann.

For me this issue is important as I am still relatively young and frisky  ;)  yet have been told by my specialist that sufficient VitD / calcium and weight bearing exercise is important to keep my diagnosed ostopenia from progressing further.

A little scary to read that most of the population in Nothern and Southern climes are at some times during the year VitD deficient and therefore a contributing factor to to a range of potential nasty medical issues including lower immunity as a consequence.

So maybe a good idea for everybody to get tested for VitD when they next go see their doctor..... especially our poz friends now experiencing the freezing Winter conditions below the equator!! Now where did I put my Pina Colada  ;D
Sero converted Sept '10 / Confirmed + Dec '10
Jan '11, VL 9,500 / CD4 482 (32%)
Feb '11, VL 5,800 / CD4 680 (37%)
start Atripla
Mch '11, VL UD / CD4 700 (42%)
Jun  '11, VL UD / CD4 750 (43%)
swap to Kivexa and Efav. due to osteopenia diag. (DEXA) / kidney issues ( decline in eGFR to 77 )
start supplements - Vit D3 / Omega 3 / multivitamin / mini aspirin
Dec '11,  VL UD <20 /  CD4 670 (49%)  / CD4:CD8 = 1.4
all labs now within normal ranges
Mch '12,  VL UD / CD4 600 (51%)
Sep '12,  VL UD / CD4 810 (51%)
Mch '13   VL UD / CD4 965 (56%)
Sep '13   VL UD / CD4 (not taken)
Dec '13   VL UD / CD4 901 (35%) / CD4:CD8 = 1.1  /  eGFR > 100

 


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