In a new study, researchers found that taking too much vitamin D supplements could lead to kidney failure.
The finding suggests the health risks of high doses of vitamin D.
The research was conducted by a team from the University of Toronto.
In the study, the team reported a case study that highlights the dangers of taking too much vitamin D.
In this case, a 54-year-old man returned from a trip to Southeast Asia where he spent much of his holiday sunbathing.
He experienced increased levels of creatinine, which suggests kidney damage or malfunction.
Creatinine is a compound which is produced by the metabolism of creatine and excreted in the urine.
After referral to a kidney specialist and further testing, the team discovered that the man had been prescribed high doses of vitamin D by a naturopath.
The naturopath recommended a dose of 8 drops of vitamin D every day.
Over two and a half years, the patient took 8-12 drops of vitamin D daily, totaling 8000-12 000 IU. He did not have a history of bone loss or vitamin D deficiency.
The researchers found that the man had very high levels of calcium in the blood, which left him with severe kidney damage.
They suggest that although vitamin D toxicity is rare owing to a large therapeutic range, the over-the-counter vitamin D supplements may pose a health risk to patients who are not familiar with the issue.
Currently, the recommended daily allowance is 400-1000 IU, and 800-2000 IU recommended for people with a high risk of osteoporosis and for older adults.
The researchers suggest that patients and clinicians should be better informed about the risks of overuse of vitamin D.
Given new findings from the US Preventive Services Task Force, current Canadian guidelines regarding its use in low-risk individuals should be revisited.
One author of the study is Dr. Bourne Auguste, a Clinical Fellow in Home Dialysis at Toronto General Hospital and the University of Toronto.
The study is published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal.
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