What is a desired loading regimen for vitamin D?

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A loading regimen for vitamin D usually refers to a therapy in which people are given a very high dose of vitamin D to bring up their blood levels quickly, followed by much lower doses of vitamin D to maintain healthy vitamin D blood levels. Such a regimen is sometimes tried in elderly people whose blood levels of vitamin D are very low and who are at risk of bone fractures.

In one study, doctors in the Netherlands developed a regimen in which the loading dose was determined by multiplying a person's vitamin D level of deficiency by their body weight in kilograms, and then multiplying by the number 40. Other researchers have tested giving people a single dose of 50,000 or 100,000 international units (IUs) of vitamin D as a "jump-start," followed by daily doses of 1,000 IUs of vitamin D to maintain healthy vitamin D blood levels.

It is pretty common practice to use a loading regimen in clinics. Some doctors use 50,000 units a week for 8 weeks, and then drop down to a maintenance level of 1,000 units per day. So yes, that is commonly done, and is a good idea for really deficient people so that it does not take months to get their vitamin D levels corrected. If you were to just go straight to maintenance it would be 3 months before you would bring the blood level up to the desired level.

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Important: This content reflects information from various individuals and organizations and may offer alternative or opposing points of view. It should not be used for medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. As always, you should consult with your healthcare provider about your specific health needs.