Vitamin D3 in Morning Helped Her Sleep Through Night (Story 10)

A woman named Jenny West, who lives in Chiltern Hills (west of London), commented that  she “discovered independently that D3 first thing in the morning works.” I asked her for details:

I (and my family) started to take Vitamin D3 because we are all dyslexic/dyspraxic and had Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD, a type of depression). Previously we had tried using light boxes (minimal effect), getting out every lunchtime (more useful) and finally 5HTp — which works but is expensive and if you start it once you are in SAD you can end up ‘wired’. Our SAD symptoms were mainly sleepiness and lack of energy (= hibernation), and brain fog (= difficulty concentrating).

We started taking D3 (2000 IU, Solgar) in gelcaps. That first winter, for the first time ever, no one had any seasonal affective disorder. I had had it since the age of 21, my youngest child when only 4 yrs old, and my other two children by the time they were 18 yrs old. At this point, we were taking the D3 at random times, commonly lunchtime or later, often when everyone was together and the vitamin pot was handed around!

This autumn, all the youngsters had moved out. I found I was forgetting the D3, so I moved it to the bathroom and started taking it first thing in the morning (8-9 am). Then in September, I started taking 3000 IU (instead of 2000 IU). We’d been in Greece and had come back to a gloomy autumn and I wanted to make sure SAD didn’t kick in. In a month I started sleeping through the night most nights.

Before I started taking D3 first thing in the morning, I only slept through 10% of my nights, and had been doing so for at least 15 years. I would wake at 3-4 am, but didn’t get up unless I had been awake for more than 3/4 hr. Then I would be awake until 6 am. Now I sleep without a break (other than turning over) from midnight to 8 am. I sleep like this 95% of my nights, and that includes the odd night when I took the D3 much later in the morning because I had slept in – and consequently woke the following night.

As a coeliac, I take the supplements many coeliacs take – probiotics, minerals, vitamins – but none of these affected my sleep either way. So it really looks as if it is the timing plus the correct dose of D3.

BTW the extra daytime energy is fantastic.

She is 5 feet 4 inches, 64 kg. Notice that 2000 IU first thing in the morning did not improve her sleep but 3000 IU first thing in the morning did. I had a similar experience: 2000 IU had no clear effect  but 4000 IU did.

11 Responses to “Vitamin D3 in Morning Helped Her Sleep Through Night (Story 10)”

  1. Vitamin D3 First Thing in Morning: Still More Experience « Thor Falk's Reading List Says:

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  2. babar Says:

    Negative result here: I’ve taken 5-8k per day for 2 weeks, first thing in the morning, and not found myself sleeping through the night or with significantly improved energy.

  3. Daniel Says:

    If we had consistent sunlight exposure throughout the day, wouldn’t steady dosage of Vitamin D during daylight hours work better? Or is the high “shock dose” just important to program circadian rhythms?

  4. Seth Roberts Says:

    If we had consistent sunlight exposure throughout the day, wouldn’t steady dosage of Vitamin D during daylight hours work better? Or is the high “shock dose” just important to program circadian rhythms?

    All sorts of things slow down and spread out over time D3 uptake starting with the need to digest the gel around the D3. But I guess that your second idea (“important to program…”) is correct.

  5. Cap Says:

    I wonder about what Daniel asked too. I might have guessed taking D3 at noon when sunlight is most intense would be the most natural thing to do. In any case after the morning D3 entries started to appear here sometime before Christmas, I switched to taking my D3 first thing in the morning too (between 4-7000 IU) and so far I’ve noticed significantly increased feelings of sleepiness at bedtime, with moderate improvement falling asleep, reduced wakings throughout the night, and much better ability to sleep in.

  6. Ted Says:

    I’ve been taking my D3 (4,000 IU) at various times throughout the day but haven’t noticed it having any effect on my sleep. (One thing I have noticed having an effect on my sleep was taking iodine in the form of kelp in the morning. It gives me a real boost during the day and helps me sleep better at night.)

  7. nydwracu Says:

    I’ve been taking 3000 IU for the past two weeks or so. It’s not enough to affect my restfulness much, I think (I’m about 6’5″), but it does keep my sleep schedule regulated; ordinarily, I’d wake up half an hour later every day, but now I wake up between 5 and 7 every day. (Interestingly, I’m much more rested when I wake up at 7 than I am when I wake up at 5 or 6, even if I got less sleep.)

  8. Seth Roberts Says:

    it does keep my sleep schedule regulated; ordinarily, I’d wake up half an hour later every day, but now I wake up between 5 and 7 every day.

    That supports the idea that Vitamin D3 is acting like sunlight.

  9. Mathew Ferguson Says:

    Hi, I was wondering about the levels of Vitamin D that some of these people are taking. Various websites I’ve looked up list as low as 600 IU as a recommended maximum dose for adults. At the levels noted here they list a range of negative side effects (mostly due to calcium in the blood).

    Are there any long-term vitamin D users at the 3000+ IU level around who are doing well on the blood chemistry front?

  10. Sarah Madden Says:

    I’ve been following all the stories with interest so I decided to start yesterday (6,000IU) and the results have been pretty quick. Slept better and woke up easier this morning which is very unusual for me. Too soon to judge completely so I will let you know.

  11. Seth Roberts Says:

    thanks, Sarah, yes, please let me know what happens after more experience.