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Man Dies From Too Much Vitamin D

Vitamin D
Man taking pills | Image by Freepik

A man’s death has been linked to his taking extraordinarily high amounts of vitamin D, leading to experts begging caution among consumers.

David Mitchener, 89, died last May of severe hypercalcemia at East Surrey Hospital in the UK — a consequence of vitamin D toxicity. The condition results in too much calcium building up in the body, interfering with its functioning. Congestive heart failure, ischemic heart disease, and chronic kidney failure were also associated with his death.

An inquiry into the fatal incident was concluded on December 28, 2023, with the assistant coroner, Jonathan Stevens, releasing a report in January on the findings to help prevent such deaths from occurring.

The levels of vitamin D Stevens found in Mitchener’s body were the maximum that could be recorded by the laboratory, the report said.

“David Mitchener had been taking vitamin supplements for at least the preceding 9 months, purchased from NaturPlus UK,” Stevens wrote. “There were no warnings on or in the packaging detailing the specific risks or side effects of taking Vitamin D supplements.”

While supplementation may be a useful way to reap the benefits of different essential nutrients, it is not always necessary if someone is eating a balanced diet, as is the case for vitamins C and K, as previously reported in The Dallas Express.

Moreover, the supplement industry — a global money-making machine worth an estimated $177.50 billion in 2023 — peddles products that are not regulated by the Food and Drug Administration.

Vitamin D, as covered in The Dallas Express, is essential to several bodily processes and has been linked to the treatment of incurable diseases, including autoimmune disorders and cancer. Not having enough of this nutrient — with obese individuals shown to be more prone to vitamin D deficiency — can lead to a host of adverse health outcomes. These may include cardiovascular diseases and neurological issues.

While the consensus is that vitamin D is important, medical experts disagree on what the ideal daily dose is.

For instance, the National Institutes of Health recommends a daily dose of 600 international units (IU) of vitamin D supplements. Meanwhile, Dr. Patrick McCullough, a board-certified internist who conducted a study on the effects of vitamin D on asthma patients in 2019, suggested closer to 10,000 IU per day.

Weighing in on this question, Pieter Cohen, associate professor of medicine at the Cambridge Health Alliance, recommends that healthy people not ingest more than 4,000 IU each day.

“Taking more than that can cause a cascade of problems, as vitamin D acts as a hormone in the body and too much of it can lead to a number of issues,” Cohen said, according to Fox News.

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