Dr. Siris describes the connection between calcium and vitamin D and why it is important to take them together.
Recent researches confirmed what we thought for a long time which is that vitamin D is a critical partner with calcium to make sure the calcium is able to work and vitamin D has some other interesting features as well. In terms of the calcium, you won’t absorb the calcium very well if you’re vitamin D deficient, and many, many women in America are vitamin D deficient, partly because we recently changed rules for what we think ‘constitutes getting enough’.
You can get vitamin D from sunshine on your skin but today, because we use sunscreens and because so many people around the country don’t get outdoors very much during the peak sun hours. And finally don’t live in the parts of the country where is the right amount of sun, we find that we often have to supplement with a vitamin D pill in order to get enough. We think 800 to 1000 units of vitamin D is the critical number because if you don’t have enough vitamin D you won’t absorb your calcium well.
Also as you grow older the D protects your muscles and you’re less likely to fall. If you’re less likely to fall, you’re less likely to break a fragile bone.
About Dr. Ethel Siris, M.D.:
Dr. Ethel S. Siris is the Director at the Toni Stabile Osteoporosis Center, Columbia University, is the Madeline C. Stabile Professor of Medicine at Columbia University, and is the immediate past-President for the National Osteoporosis Foundation. She is board certified in endocrinology and internal medicine, focusing on osteoporosis, metabolic bone disease, and bone and mineral metabolism.