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Excess Vitamin D: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

Vitamin D is super important for our bodies, helping with the immune system, muscles, and cell growth. It also fights inflammation, keeps blood pressure in check, and looks out for our heart health. Plus, it’s a must-have for calcium to be absorbed properly, making it key for our calcium levels. But like with many things, balance is key. Too little can lead to deficiencies, while too much can be harmful. In this article, we’ll explore the risks of going overboard with vitamin D.

Excess Vitamin D: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment
Excess Vitamin D: Causes, Symptoms and Treatment

1. What Is Excess Vitamin D

Vitamin D, often referred to as the sunshine vitamin, is a crucial fat-soluble nutrient essential for maintaining overall health. It plays a significant role in calcium absorption, which is vital for bone health and other bodily functions. Vitamin D can be obtained from dietary sources, sunlight exposure, and supplements. It contributes to the proper functioning of our body cells and is key for overall well-being.

Excess Vitamin D
Excess Vitamin D

For those who may feel they’re not getting enough nutrients from their diet, supplements can be an option to meet their daily vitamin D requirements. However, it’s essential to be cautious, as excessive intake can lead to vitamin D toxicity. This toxicity occurs when blood levels exceed 150 ng/ml, as the excess vitamin D is stored in fat and gradually released into the bloodstream.

It’s worth noting that vitamin D toxicity is rare and typically occurs in individuals who take high doses of supplements for extended periods without monitoring their blood levels.

2. Causes of Excess Vitamin D

Having too much vitamin D usually happens when people take too many supplements. Your body can usually handle the amount it gets from sunlight, though spending too much time in tanning beds can also add to it. Foods don’t usually have loads of vitamin D, so getting too much from your diet is rare.


People often take vitamin D pills to fix shortages or to feel better during darker times of the year, like in winter or if they’re feeling down. But sometimes they end up taking too much, thinking it’ll make them feel even better.

3. Recognizing Symptoms Of Excess Vitamin D

What happens if you consume too much vitamin D? Some indications that you may be taking an excessive amount of vitamin D include:

  • Loss of appetite
  • Constipation
  • Dehydration
  • Disorientation
  • Dizziness
  • Fatigue
  • Frequent urination
  • High blood pressure
  • Irritability
  • Muscle weakness
  • Nausea
  • Thirst
  • Tinnitus
  • Vomiting
Recognize symptoms of vitamin D excess
Recognize symptoms of vitamin D excess

If you experience these symptoms, proactively consult your doctor. Inform them about any supplements, medications, or substances you’re taking, including their dosages. Your doctor may conduct lab tests to check your blood serum levels if they suspect your symptoms could be related to excessive vitamin D intake.

Vitamin D toxicity can lead to additional complications, such as kidney and bone issues. Your doctor may also watch out for signs of the following problems associated with too much vitamin D.

4. The Detrimental Effects of Excess Vitamin D

According to experts in nutrition, having too much vitamin D can bring about some health issues:

  • Feeling queasy and throwing up: These are the usual signs of having too much vitamin D in your system. It happens because there’s too much calcium in your blood, but not everyone gets these symptoms.
  • High levels of calcium in your blood: Overdoing it on vitamin D can cause an overload of calcium in your body, leading to calcium buildup in your tissues and skin. This can mess with your bones, causing problems like high blood pressure, bone loss, kidney damage, tiredness, and feeling dizzy.
  • Bone troubles: Even though vitamin D is good for your bones by helping with calcium, taking too much can lower the levels of vitamin K2 in your blood. Vitamin K2 is crucial for keeping your bones healthy, so it’s important not to go overboard with vitamin D supplements.
  • Kidney issues: Having too much vitamin D makes your kidneys work harder to get rid of the excess. If this goes on for too long, it can up your chances of kidney failure. Keep an eye out for any signs that your kidneys might not be doing so well.
  • Tummy problems like stomach pains, constipation, or diarrhea: These are common digestive issues that can happen when there’s too much calcium floating around in your blood from too much vitamin D.
Harmful effects of excess vitamin D
Harmful effects of excess vitamin D

5. Treatment for Excess Vitamin D

Here’s a rundown of how to deal with too much vitamin D based on what we’ve learned:

  • Stop Taking Vitamin D Supplements: The first step to tackle vitamin D overload is to stop taking vitamin D pills.
  • Stay Hydrated: You might need fluids through an IV to balance out the effects of having too much calcium.
  • Medicines: Your doctor might prescribe drugs like corticosteroids or bisphosphonates to stop your bones from releasing too much calcium.
  • Dialysis: If your kidneys aren’t working well, you might need dialysis to clean your blood.

6. How to Supplement Vitamin D Without Overdosing

To safely add vitamin D to your diet, keep these tips in mind:

  • Talk to your doctor: Before starting any vitamin D supplements, chat with your doctor to figure out how much you need.
  • Keep an eye on how much you’re taking: Make sure you don’t go over the recommended daily dose, which is usually around 600 IU for most adults.
  • Stay away from high-dose supplements: Avoid taking too much vitamin D in one go, as it can be harmful. Stick to no more than 4,000 IU per day.
  • Eat foods with vitamin D: Get your dose from natural sources like fatty fish, beef liver, cheese, egg yolks, and certain mushrooms.
  • Get some sun: Spending time in the sun can also boost your vitamin D levels, but don’t overdo it to avoid sunburn.
  • Get regular blood tests: Keep track of your vitamin D levels with regular blood tests to make sure they’re where they should be.

7. Conclusion

In conclusion, understanding the potential risks of excess vitamin D is vital for maintaining optimal health. Whether you’ve experienced symptoms firsthand or simply want to learn more, we encourage you to share your stories and feedback with us. Your input helps us create content that’s relevant and informative. Don’t forget to explore more blogs from Biosculpture for further insights on managing excess vitamin D and other health-related topics. Your health journey matters to us, and we’re here to support you every step of the way.

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Ruth Clifford
Ruth Cliffordhttps://biosculpture.ie/
Professor Ruth Clifford, a Consultant Haematologist at UHL since November 2016, stands at the forefront of malignant haematology, specializing in the treatment of lymphoid malignancies, including chronic lymphocytic leukaemia (CLL).
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